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Beach scene

Then: Activities during the traditional spring break have evolved over the years. A chance for quiet time away from campus increasingly yielded to beach scenes further and further afield -- eventually centered around Florida and tropical countries -- with students seeking release and, sometimes, one last big road trip together with their friends from their college years. A 1962 NBC news report on one of the early spring breaks even features (at the 21:30 mark) an interview with a student in an Oswego State sweater. (Photo courtesy of 1966 Ontarian)

Students at Alternative Spring Break to El Salvador

Now: While many students seek the traditional fun and sun, an increasing number of students spend their free week onAlternative Spring Breakprograms helping the less fortunate in areas of need in the United States and abroad. One example is Heather Rougeu (left) and Kelly Nassar helping fix up housing in El Salvador. This year's volunteering destinations, coordinated by the Office for Service Learning and Community Service, will include teaching English to children in the Dominican Republic; providing HeadStart day care for underprivileged children in Bridgeton, N.J.; supporting the Carolina Tiger Rescue in Pittsboro, N.C.; home building for Habitat for Humanity in Florence, Ala., and Waterloo, Iowa; and helping with ongoing Hurricane Katrina relief along the Gulf Coast. (Danielle Burgos photo)