Featured, News

UMAB springs into service

While most students use the week of spring break to sit back, relax and tan by the beach, the members of University of Miami Alternate Breaks (UMAB) take the time to focus on social justice issues.

The idea of an “alternative break” is not something that is unique to UM’s campus. UMAB is a chapter for Break Away, a national nonprofit that helps with the development of alternative break schools around the country.

“What sets alternative breaks under Break Away apart from typical programs is the focus on education and orientation prior to the trip and the use of the trip as a catalyst for future action,” said Miranda Goot, a UMAB logistic chair.

The UMAB trips aren’t only offered during spring break. In the fall semester, UMAB sends four groups of students throughout Florida to participate in service projects, and in the winter, there is a week-long international trip to Puerto Rico. The spring break trips send students around the country to focus on different social issues in the United States. Students can choose from different destinations; each place focuses on a specific social justice issue.

Goot says she became involved with UMAB her freshman year because she wanted to get involved with service.

“I came in to college wanting to join a lot of different organizations covering a broad spectrum so I thought I would try UMAB,” she said.  “Ironically, I chose UMAB because I did not think it would be a big time commitment, and now it is my life because it has changed the way I view the world.”

This year, there are 12 groups of students, totaling 100 travelers. The groups will tackle topics such as environmental sustainability, LGBTQ issues, children’s issues and racism.

When Meera Nagarsheth was a freshman at UM, she chose to go on a service trip with UMAB instead of going back home or on vacation for her spring break. Her group went to Los Angeles, Calif., where she worked with issues related to HIV and AIDS. The trip was a catalyst for her to get involved in her own community and on campus. She now serves as the co-chair for UMAB.

“My trip freshman year really opened my eyes to models of servant leadership,” Nagarsheth said.

March 5, 2014

Reporters

Erika Glass

Multimedia Editor


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

A six-pack of Canes notes on a Thursday: ▪ You know when you will know the Hurricanes are really bac ...

A six-pack of Hurricanes notes on a Wednesday: ▪ The Canes find themselves in the mix for a couple o ...

It was May 2015, and the Miami Herald was reporting for a feature on high school football players ab ...

Deidrick Stanley had his eye on the Miami Hurricanes long before his hometown school finally offered ...

A six-pack of Hurricanes notes on a Tuesday: ▪ UM has only two Rivals.com five-star recruits on the ...

The 2019 NFL draft begins tonight from Nashville, Tennessee, and continues through Saturday with sev ...

The final concrete slabs for the 25 interconnected buildings of the newly named Lakeside Village are ...

A former UM professor started a company dedicated to publishing books on African-American culture, h ...

A group of School of Architecture students visited the Caribbean nation to learn about the historic ...

Faculty with the Miller School of Medicine and Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science w ...

Estela Perez-Somarriba of the Miami women's tennis team won ACC Player of the Year for the seco ...

Sophomore Adria Soriano Barrera earned second team accolades for the second straight season, while f ...

The Miami track and field program is set to compete at the Tom Jones Memorial meet this weekend for ...

The No. 24 Hurricanes welcome ACC Coastal division foe Virginia Tech for a three-game series beginni ...

Miami and adidas today unveiled the first-ever baseball jerseys made from Parley Ocean Plastic. ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.