Spring break! Time to shake off those midwinter blues, shuck the down parka, and fly off to somewhere sandy and warm. Unless, that is, you’re a UMSI student.
Every year since 1999, the School of Information has sponsored an Alternative Spring Break (ASB), sending motivated, enthusiastic UMSI students out into the world to perform a week of public service in a big city setting. While many of their friends and fellow students are catching up on schoolwork and sleep or sunning down south, these dedicated volunteers are putting in full 40-hour weeks at a nonprofit, government, or cultural institutions aligned with their educational goals and interests. In the 14 years the program has existed, participating institutions have benefited from over 33,000 hours of effort by over 700 SI students.
Participation in the program is free for the students and organizations, with the costs of transportation and the week’s lodging covered by student fundraising activities. Throughout the school year, the students engage in a variety of fundraising efforts for ASB, including a fall book sale, a midwinter talent show, and the just-concluded Penny War.
Last year, the students introduced an online fundraising component as well, bringing in over $10,000 from family and friends. The 2012 Crowdrise online campaign begins February 13 and continues through March 9. The goal is $15,000.
To make things more interesting, many students have formed teams to see who can raise the most money, and anyone can either contribute to a team or join in as a fundraiser themselves. A variety of prizes will be awarded to donors and to top fundraisers throughout the campaign.
To donate online, visit crowdrise.com/si-asb2012 or click the Crowdrise image above.
To make things even more fun and interesting, during the Crowdrise campaign donors and teams can win a number of prizes, ranging from Moosejaw gift cards to lunch with major players at Facebook and Twitter. To see this week's prizes, go here.
Everything you could possibly want to know about ASB, all gathered together in one convenient place, right here.