270 Students Participate in Service Projects During Spring Break

An additional 33 students take part in business workshops, spiritual retreat
March 2nd, 2015 by 


Holy Cross students participate in the Spiritual Exercises in Weston, Mass.

Hundreds of Holy Cross students—roughly one in 10 at the College—have traded in their beach chairs to participate in “alternative” spring break programs, which range from service immersion trips to business workshops to reflective retreats.

Here are a few of the programs taking place during this week.

Spring Break Immersion Program
Approximately 270 students are participating in a week of service through the consistently popular Spring Break Immersion Program. The community service work includes meal preparation at shelters; home repairs; working with elderly and people with disabilities; and exploring immigration issues.

The large number of students are engaging with communities in 25 different locations across 13 states.

Students are traveling to 15 sites across the Appalachian region, including Salem, W. Va.; Barren Spring, Va.; Whitley City, Ky.; and Fries, Va. The array of Appalachian sites, which have been at the heart of the immersion program since its establishment, offer over 200 students diverse opportunities to connect with communities and to engage in and understand the issues that affect them.

Students are also serving in L’Arche communities in five different locations: Mobile, Ala.; Syracuse, N.Y.; St. Louis, Mo.; Jacksonville, Fla.; and Haverhill, Mass. L’Arche is an international network of communities that enables people with and without disabilities to live in faith and community together.

Additionally, students are continuing relief work to support the communities affected by Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans; meeting and working with migrants in El Paso, Texas; and preparing meals and providing other services for the homeless and their families in Alamosa, Colo. Two urban sites—in Chicago and Camden, N.J.—offer students the opportunity to learn about urban poverty and social economic issues through work at social service agencies including food banks and urban youth centers.

The immersion program, begun almost 40 years ago, is sponsored by the Chaplains’ Office.

Learn more about the Spring Break Immersion Program.

Business Workshops
Twenty-one students will be on campus to participate in two new business workshops—the Advertising, Communications, and PR Workshop; and the Sales and Marketing Workshop—which aim to introduce students to the marketing, public relations, advertising and sales industries and expose them to the many careers within the fields.

These rigorous and immersive workshops will be run by alumni executives and include business simulations, case studies and team projects. Sponsored by the Ciocca Office of Entrepreneurial Studies (COES), the workshops help students develop job search confidence, while they are simultaneously given the tools to leverage their liberal arts degree in the business world by successful alumni entrepreneurs.

Learn more about the Ciocca Office of Entrepreneurial Studies.

Spiritual Exercises
Another 12 students are participating in the a five-day, adapted version of the traditional Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola. The retreat, which takes place at the Campion Renewal Center in Weston, Mass., gives students the space to reflect on their lives and their relationship to others, to reflect more deeply on their faith and the power of God’s love for them.

In addition to time set aside for personal reflection and prayer, the chaplain retreat directors engage students in liturgies and thematic talks to help assist in their faith journeys. The retreat directors are Lucille Cormier, S.A.S.V.; Emily Davis, assistant chaplain; Nancy Sheridan, S.A.S.V.; Jim Hayes, S.J., associate chaplain for mission; and Meg Fox-Kelly, associate chaplain and director of retreats.

The Spiritual Exercises are also offered in October, January, and May, and attract more than 100 students annually.

Learn more about the Spiritual Exercises.

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