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Creighton students prepare to embark on spring service and justice trips

Some 147 Creighton University students will spend their upcoming Spring Break on trips of a different kind as they venture out to 19 sites around the country to work, learn and reflect as part of the University’s annual Schlegel Center for Service and Justice Spring Break Service & Justice Trips.

For 34 years, Creighton students have been taking part in the trips, using the week off from classes to continue their education in different ways. This year, groups will be heading to work with the homeless populations of Minneapolis, Cleveland and East St. Louis, Illinois. There will also be an environmental immersion trip to West Virginia.

Immersion trip to Memphis, Tennessee, and Montgomery, Alabama, will perform service work and walk in the footsteps of pioneers in the Civil Rights Movement. The latter group will take part in an annual commemoration of the walk across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, where Civil Rights marchers, on their way to Montgomery on March 7, 1965, were viciously beaten and gassed in an event that came to be known as “Bloody Sunday.”

Two groups of students will visit the U.S.-Mexico border and learn about the struggles of migrants and immigrants who live on either side of the national boundary.

“Participants learn so much from our host partners and the people that they meet doing service, it’s impossible for it not to have an impact on their lives,” said Ken Reed-Bouley, director of the Schlegel Center for Service and Justice. “When they return, participants are able to apply what they learned on their trips to the local community and their studies. Some students may change their majors, but many are confirmed in their vocation path: to be educators, social workers, health care providers and business leaders who work for and with others, especially the poor and marginalized in our society.”

For students staying around Omaha or Nebraska, there are also service trips closer to campus: at the Siena/Francis House shelter, OneWorld Community Health Centers and Abide Omaha. Students will also travel to Axtell, Nebraska, to work with people with intellectual disabilities through Mosaic, and another group will live and work with people on the Winnebago Reservation in Thurston County.

Upon their return from the trips, students will have an opportunity to share their experiences and reflections during a luncheon hosted by the SCSJ.

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Creighton University is a Jesuit, Catholic university bridging health, law, business and the arts and sciences for a more just world.