Do you have plans for spring break? Do you want to have plans for spring break?
If you answered no and yes to the questions above, then I have your solution.
Let me present to you…
Spring break immersion trips!!!
So just what is an immersion trip, you ask? This article in USA Today College explains it as:
an experience aimed at getting students outside of their comfort zone and into the often harsh realities of impoverished communities, both domestic and abroad
An immersion trip differs from a mission in that mission trips are usually meant to fix something or spread a faith, while immersion trips are an opportunity to expand your world view and learn about a social problem. At Hope, that also includes looking at the problem from a Christian perspective. Hope has been doing immersion trips for a while, and after hearing about them in chapel and from friends, I made the decision to not only sign up for a trip, but to co-lead one as well!
I grew up in the church, so I am familiar with mission and immersion trips, but have never gone on one for various reasons. When I came to college, I gave up all hope of ever going on a trip because I was leaving my home church and assumed that Hope would not have any opportunities. Luckily for me, that is just the opposite! Hope has lots of different immersion trips that are available for students to be a part of.
For the trip I am leading, Nikki (my co-leader) and I will be taking our amazing group to East Palo Alto, California!
Each trip focuses on a different social justice issue; ours will be focused on the education system in an urban setting. Like I explained in an earlier post, I have been interested in education for most of my life, so choosing a trip focused on the issue was a no-brainer for me. Some other teams this year are going to places like Nashville, Orlando, and Staten Island, where they will be learning about urban ministry, housing issues, and youth. After returning from the trips, teams will bring what they learned back to Holland and continue to educate themselves on the topic. How neat is that?!
During the week, my group will be visiting a few schools, working with first-eighth graders, leading a high school retreat, and talking about how education affects the urban community. Each night, we will come together as a group and have Bible study centered around what we learned that day and how it relates to the Word of God. Getting to be a part of this trip is one more reason why I love Hope. As a student at a liberal arts college, I am provided the luxury of exploration, inside and outside of the classroom. It is also cool to see Hope’s mission statement to “educate students for lives of service in a global community” acted out in my life.
If this sounds like something you might want to do, head on over to the website to sign up for a trip; make sure you do it soon, they are almost all full!
Questions? Comments? Tweet at me or leave a comment. Have a great weekend!