Alternative Spring Break

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Mt. Parnassus campus of the Programme
for Adolescent Mothers.

NOTE: The Spring 2021 Alternative Spring Break program has been cancelled in order to maintain the health and safety of CSW students and faculty during Covid-19. Students are encouraged to reach out to program administrators (Neil Abell, Dina Wilke, and Jane Dwyer Lee) and check back in on this page for additional information and updates on future program opportunities.

The Alternative Spring Break program is an opportunity for BSW and MSW students to study social services and participate in a volunteer service project in an international setting. Working together with our international partners, we deepen our understanding of global social work issues while sharing our time and energy in a collaborative process supporting local agency goals.

The CSW has longstanding relationships with leaders in Grenada’s social and child welfare services, who offer program participants important cultural insights into the concerns and successes of this vibrant Caribbean nation. On past trips we have collaborated with the Programme for Adolescent Mothers (PAM) to better understand and support the development of young families in this vibrant, complex environment of Grenada. Students participated in projects such as developing training materials and activities focused on strengthening healthy families, reducing domestic violence, and other topics identified by NGO service recipients, faculty, and administrators. And of course, we saved time to enjoy their wonderful beaches, including Grand Anse and Morne Rouge!

Commitment and dedication are essential for a successful and rewarding Alternative Spring Break trip. Participants are required to attend class sessions between January and March where they will get to know fellow trip members, learn about cultural and social dynamics in Grenada, and form task groups for the development of program content and activities for use with local NGOs. Participants register for and receive three hours of course credit (SOW 4940/5943 International Community Engagement) at the undergraduate or graduate level, as appropriate. This class has mandatory attendance. Students applying for spring break should consult with an academic advisor and plan on a spring course schedule that does not conflict with this required course. To the extent possible, admissions decisions will be made before the drop/add period for spring semester ends, allowing students who are not admitted or who chose not to accept an opening in the program to modify their spring schedules as necessary.

Program requirements:

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Service project.
  • All participants must be College of Social Work students in good standing with the University.
  • Students must have at least a 2.75 GPA.
  • Applications will also take into consideration students' interest in child welfare, parenting, and adolescent development, and prior experience (if any) abroad. 
  • Applicants must participate in a mandatory 15-minute interview as part of the selection process. 
  • Enrollment in SOW 4940/5943 International Community Engagement and attendance at all pre-departure and post-travel meetings.
  • Adherence to all fee/application deadlines (below).

Spring Break: Spring 2022, Dates TBD
Program Fee: TBD

The program fee includes tuition/fees for the 3 credit hour course (SOW 4940/5943); housing; transportation related to arrival, departure, and scheduled activities; on-site lunches; and insurance. Students will be independently responsible for airfare, some meals, personal expenses, and entertainment.

Program Scholarship

The College of Social Work International Programs offers a limited number of scholarships for Alternative Spring Break participants. Details will be provided by the fall 2021 semester, when recruiting and admissions is completed for the spring 2022 program.

In addition, FSU International Programs offers Spring Break Program Scholarships. Please visit their website for more information.

Important Dates

  • Scholarship and Program Applications- Mid-September 2021
  • Applicant Interviews- Late-September 2021
  • Participants Notified of Acceptance- Early-October 2021
    (Participants will be notified of their status as an alternative spring break participant or if they have been placed on a waiting list. Students put on the waitlist will be contacted individually if a spot in the program opens.)
  • Accepted students must pay a $100 application fee- Late-October 2021
  • Non-refundable $500 Confirmation Deposit Due to FSU International Programs- Early-November 2021
  • Full Payment Due to FSU International Programs- Early-December 2021. 
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