Laura Vang '15
Student Director for Conversations That Matter
Hometown: Memphis, TNRead the full interview
The CCESP team — comprised of Dartmouth undergraduates, medical students from the Geisel School of Medicine, faculty and professionals — travel to the Siuna area in Nicaragua. CCESP fields two teams: the Clinical Health team that focuses on medical services, and then Community Development Team that focuses on infrastructure development and agricultural work. The team provides service in these areas by focusing resources on concerns determined by members in the host community. The trip is coordinated by students in partnership with Bridges to Community, a non-profit organization with a long history of service work in Nicaragua. Students benefit educationally from working with Dartmouth professionals and Nicaraguan community members toward a common goal.
E-mail the CCESP-Nicaragua Program with questions.
ASB Service Trips are student-led and place teams of students in international and domestic U.S. communities to engage in community service for during the spring break interim. Students perform short-term projects for community agencies and learn about issues such as literacy, poverty, racism, hunger, homelessness and the environment.
Email the Alternative Spring Break Program with questions.
Short term service trip (two days, one overnight) to Boston during the winter interim, specifically for international Dartmouth undergraduates. Help out at homeless shelter, cook a meal for a hungry family, make a difference and get to see Boston!
"Service itself and the misconception of service being one group helping another was especially deconstructed on this trip as we saw how much the community gave back to us: from providing food for those with special dietary needs, hosting us with supplies from their own home, spending time with us, as well as taking the time and showing so much patience with our novice skill at the build site, it often felt that we were receiving more than we were giving, especially when we were such beginners to building. On one of the earlier days of our week when we were still on the learning curve to the point where were acting more as hindrances to the contractors than helping them in their work and both sides were getting frustrated, it was important to realize how much in that moment we were making service more about ourselves; and how we wanted to feel good doing good when in reality service isn't about making one self feel self-righteous, but about being able to help make someone else's life better. Being encouraged by this was the best possible self-motivation, and to be able to help others and at the end of the week, seeing the walls and second floor that we had built, and being able to picture the family that we had met living within it, as well as being able to support the local businesses with our group patronage was a better way to spend Spring Break than I could have ever asked for. More than ever, 'service' felt more like friendship building than a one-way channel. "
Last Updated: 7/17/14