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Sharks and Service Trips (SAS)

SAS Year in Review

SAS Year in Review

Overview

Are you interested in something more than a service day? Well, look no further! Sharks and Service Trips, SAS, are designed for Sharks who are looking for a meaningful service that is a weekend or week long experience. Each SAS trip gives students the opportunity to learn and serve with a different social issue and community. In past years, students have traveled to Key West, Florida, New Orleans, Louisiana, and Negril, Jamaica. Take some time and look through the past service trip experiences SLCE has offered and think about applying to a trip!

These SAS trips are a great a really great way to get involved and give back to the local and global community, but don’t take our word for it. Check out what our SAS Trip Leaders had to say about their experiences on a SAS trip here!

Mission

Sharks and Service is an alternative break program that works to address social issues through collaborative community partnerships, meaningful service, transformative education, and reflective dialogue.

2019-2020 Sharks and Service (SAS) Trips

  • Weekend SAS Trip: October 17-20, 2019
  • Winter Break SAS Trip I: December 7-14, 2019
  • Winter Break SAS Trip II: December 8-12, 2019 TBD
  • MLK Weekend SAS Trip: January 18-19, 2020
  • Spring Break SAS Trip I: March 1-7, 2020
  • International Spring Break SAS Trip: March 1-7, 2020
  • Summer SAS Trip: May 3-9, 2020

Application Process

  • Those that are interested in applying for a SAS trip can do so through the Sharks and Service SharkHub portal, located here. Each SAS trip will require completion of an online application and payment submitted through Marketplace. Being that SAS trips require travel, food and lodging expenses, there are costs associated with these experiences. We encourage students to fundraise for weeklong trips to help limit the cost of involvement. If you have financial concerns that may limit your ability to be involved in a SAS trip, please contact us to see if we can further assist.
  • Interested in applying to be a SAS Site Leader? Applications to be a Site Leader open in April for the next academic year. Find the application on the Sharks and Service SharkHub Page.

Core Values

For more information about our programs core values, please click the headers below:

SAS participants serve for a period of time in designated communities. Each trip focuses on a specific social issue. These issues may include anything from Hurricane Relief, Youth Development, Food Insecurity, Hunger and Homeless, Immigration, Education, and Special Needs and Disabilities, etc. By serving a specific social issue, participants are expected to become more aware of the issue and understand the impact they can make toward improving the community.

The core value of leadership relates to both the Site Leaders and the participants leadership journey. As Student Site Leaders, you are apart of the trip planning process from pre-trip decision making, facilitating group discussions during the trip, and reorientation back to the university community upon completion of the trip. Student Site Leaders will lead conversations that educate the participants on the specific social issue that you will be serving during your trip and help to making meaning of the service throughout the trip.

Student participants also gain valuable leadership skills throughout a SAS experience. Through the leadership of the Student Site Leaders, participants learn to effectively communicate with community affiliates and work collaboratively with other participants to complete tasks. These are useful skills that students will take with them well beyond the SAS experience.

Education is at the forefront of a SAS trip. Student participants, Student Site Leaders, and Advisors, are expected to learn from their experiences serving the community.  Through guided reflection activities, interactions with community members and their collaborative work with others, participants learn about the root causes of the social issue they are serving and how their service makes an impact in that community.

Community serves two major roles in SAS trips: building community among trip participants and serving a community.

SAS trips encourage community among the trip participants. While each participant brings different experiences and knowledge to the trip, serving along side each other for the duration of the trip allows them to identify a common bond they will always share. SAS trips help to bridge connections and build friendships, even after the completion of the trip.

Each SAS trip serves a different community. Participants entering this community learn about the cultural norms and the issues facing these communities. They learn to respect the community and realize that although they may just be visiting for a short period of time, they have the ability to make a larger impact on this community.

Service Trip Opportunities

For more information about our upcoming trips and where we will be serving, click on the links below:

The October Weekend SAS trip was spent volunteering in Naples, Florida at Corkscrew Sanctuary. Participants assisted Corkscrew Sanctuary with removing the common reed invasive species of Phragmites. Participants learned the vital role that  Corkscrew Sanctuary plays in the Florida waterway system, as well as the larger impact that pollution, invasive species, and lack of awareness has on the environment. 

Social Issue: Environmental Awareness

ExEL Unit Eligible: No

This traditional trip to Asheville, NC focuses on serving surrounding neighborhoods of Asheville that do not have adequate access to produce and foods that provide full nutritional benefits. With the assistance of the YMCA of Western North Carolina, participants sort and distribute produce to these neighbors through the mobile market service. Food is distributed at no cost for the community members in need.

Social Issue: Food Insecurity

ExEL Unit Eligible: Yes, 1 unit

Participants will assist with multiple organizations in Collier County, Florida. These organizations such as, Guadalupe Center and Habitat for Humanity, primarily work with individuals and families of migrant farm workers and offer services such as childcare, housing options, and access to food. 

Social Issue: Immigration

ExEL Unit Eligible: No

The MLK Weekend trip is focused on the theme of "Give Where You Live." Participants will have the opportunity to serve with a variety of organizations serving residents of Broward County in honor of the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. 

Social Issue: Hunger & Homelessness

ExEL Unit Eligible: No

Participants will have the opportunity to work with the organization Rebuilding Macon, Inc. They will assist residents of Macon, specifically, low-income elderly or disabled homeowners, in marking their homes more accessible to meet their needs. This includes safety alterations, comfort, health related alterations, energy efficiency, and independency.

Social Issue: Disability & Accessibility 

ExEL Unit Eligible: Yes, 1 unit

 

In collaboration with the organization Cultural Connections and Volunteers, participants will be tasked to build stoves for community members, install flooring and assist with with small renovation projects in the community. Participants will work to make improvements to local homes (shacks) building Indigenous type stoves and flooring in homes. Currently most of the homes have dirt floors covered with coffee bags, straw mats, or anything they can find to cover the dirt. Most of the families cook on open fires resulting in health issues.

Social Issue: Community Development

ExEL Unit Eligible: Yes, 1 unit

Participants will travel to Boulder Creek, CA to serve as camp counselors for to 5th-6th grade students attending the YMCA of Silicon Valley Camp Campbell’s Science Camp. Participants will have the opportunity to go on field study trips in the mountains of Northern California providing hands-on ecology exploration in the Redwood Forest. Participants will play a vital part in role modeling for campers, providing leadership and lessons to campers. 

Social Issue: Youth Development & Education

ExEL Unit Eligible: Yes, 1 unit

Refund Policy

It is our hope that you will be able to fulfill your commitment to attend a SAS trip after applying, but in case you are no longer able to attend, please review our refund policy so you know how it may affect you financially.

Students who can no longer attend one of our trips and would like to request a refund must adhere to the following policy. The refund policy is included in all SAS applications; participants agree to it when they submit their application.

All students requesting a refund must submit a letter in writing to the program coordinator explaining why a refund should be given.

If approved, refunds will be given in the following manner dependent on the type of SAS trip.

Extenuating circumstances that prevent you from fully participating will be considered, but are not guaranteed.

For participation in weekend long SAS trips, your payment is due at the time of your application. The specific amount of each trip will be identified in the SharkHub application at the time you apply. You will also be asked to submit payment online via MarketPlace at the time of application. Participants that fail to attend the trip or drop out of the trip less than 7 days before the trip departure will result in no funds returned to the student.

Refund Schedule:

  • 7+ days before trip full refund
  • <7 days before trip no refund

For participation in a week long SAS trip that is driving based, a deposit will be due at the time of your application. Each weeklong trip will have specific payment dates in which additional funds will need to be paid toward the overall trip cost. The specific amount of each trip will be identified in the SharkHub application at the time you apply. Participants that fail to attend or drop out of the trip less than 14 days before the trip departure will result in no funds returned to the student. Partial funds will be eligible for refund dependent on the schedule below.

Total cost of trip must be received no later than 14 days trip departure.

Refund Schedule:

  • 21+ days before the trip full refund
  • 14 – 20 days before trip refund of deposit payment only
  • <14 days no refund

For participation in a weeklong flight bound SAS trip, a deposit will be due at the time of your application. Each weeklong trip will have specific payment dates in which additional funds will need to be paid toward the overall trip cost. The specific amount of each trip will be identified in the SharkHub application at the time of application. Participants that fail to attend or drop out of the trip less than 50 days before the trip departure will result in no funds returned to the student. Partial funds will be eligible for refund dependent on the schedule below.

Total cost of trip must be received no later than 14 days trip departure.

Refund Schedule:

  • 61+ days before the trip full refund
  • 51-60 days before the trip refund of deposit
  • <50 days no refund
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