Buck-I-SERV offering first in-person trips since start of pandemic

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Buck-I-SERV students volunteer at lowernine.org a nonprofit organization working towards restoring the lower ninth ward in New Orleans. Credit: Courtesy of Rebecca Delo

From building houses in Maine to preserving habitats for tigers in Alabama, Buck-I-SERV is back to offering a wide variety of community service and civic engagement trips for students during the winter, spring and summer breaks.

After the pandemic interrupted Buck-I-SERV’s plans for travel in 2020, in-person trips resumed for the 2021-2022 academic year, according to the Buck-I-SERV website . Rebecca Delo, senior coordinator for Buck-I-SERV, said the program plans to travel to locations it previously would have, but with pandemic precautions.

“There are efforts for the participants to do some group reflection and to talk about the social justice topics that are related to their community partner in the service that they’re doing,” Delo said.

According to the Buck-I-SERV website , Buck-I-SERV is an “alternative break program” that focuses on enhancing personal growth through service trips.  It was founded in the 2002-2003 school year by a group of students who planned a service trip to New York City, Delo said.

Buck-I-SERV differs from a typical mission trip, Hannah Ackerman, a fourth-year in  biochemistry and genetics and board member of Buck-I-SERV, said.

“Part of the goal is to leave a lasting impact on not only communities we’re serving, but also on the students, to help them get more involved and engaged in social justice,” Ackerman said.

Delo said in an email students that have not yet applied for the winter trips can still submit applications to be on a waitlist. Applications for the spring and summer 2022 trips will be available early December.

More information and a full list of previous and upcoming trips can be found on the Buck-I-SERV website .

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