Alternative Breaks

Each year, SUNY Oswego students dedicate portions of their winter and spring breaks to engage in direct service to local, domestic, and international communities.

With a wide variety of trips to choose from, you can find Alternative Break experiences that match your academic, personal, and professional interests. In the past, these week-long immersive service trips have partnered with community organizations that support efforts such as animal welfare, disaster relief, youth education, environmental concerns, quality affordable housing, health care, food security, and poverty alleviation.

Spring 2019 Alternative Break Trips

Exploring Oswego County’s Challenges and Strengths
$25; Oswego County, NY
This trip allows participants to learn more about their Oswego home away from home by serving with a different organization each day.

Affordable Housing for All
Homeownership and Repairs in a Rural Area
$150; Florence, AL
Students will build or repair homes in various stages of construction. No previous construction experience is required.

Poco a Poco
English Language Learning with Spanish Speaking Youth
$1,100; Dominican Republic
Assist English teachers in classroom engagement and lesson planning in rural schools.

Trailblazers for Change
Environmentalism and State Park Maintenance
$150; Belle Isle State Park, VA
Students will complete various trail improvement projects throughout the park.

Agua Limpia
Clean Water Efforts After Hurricane Maria
$500, Puerto Rico
Distribute water filters to municipalities in Puerto Rico, test water quality and educate families on how to use their water testing kits. 

Three meals a day,  snacks, housing, and transportation to and from sites as well as international trip flighs are included in the cost of participation.

How to Apply

Step 1

Read Info Packet

Info Packet

Step 2

Attend Info Session

Info sessions times and location can be found in the info packet

Step 3


Complete the application

Deadline Nov. 20, 2018

Fresh Water for All initiative includes Puerto Rico water filter project

Why Go on an Alternative Break?

Our Alternative Break trips engage in hands-on projects and activities that address unmet social needs determined by the community. Sometimes the work is physically demanding, sometimes it is emotional. No matter the site, your full participation will lead to you gaining new skills, building meaningful relationships, and working towards a more socially just world.

The combination of direct service, social issue education, and daily reflections during the trip result in the most successful and transformative Alternative Breaks.

Going somewhere that is in need of help and seeing it firsthand is mind-boggling and life-changing. You learn so much, so many skills and you meet incredible people, and meet a lot of people on campus.