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Alternative Breaks Participant Application 2020-2021
Thank you for your interest in being a participant on an Alternative Breaks service experience during Spring of 2021! This application is currently rolling admission. 
All service experiences offered this year will occur in a virtual format during the Spring semester and/or over Spring break from March 13, 2021 to March 21, 2021. The specific issue areas of our service experiences and our adjustment plans due to the COVID-19 pandemic can be found here: 

Due to the recent university decision to continue virtual learning into the Spring 2021 semester, all Alternative Breaks service experiences will be completely virtual for the 2020-2021 academic year. Additionally, all fees have been waived for this year's Alternative Breaks program. 

Participant expectations:
  • Attendance at issue area specific pre-service education meetings which will occur biweekly (every other week) in the Fall starting in October and weekly in the Spring
  • Participation in Alternative Breaks program participant orientation in October which will consist of asynchronous and synchronous components 
  • Attendance at program wide guest speaker events which will occur once in the Fall and twice in the Spring
  • Participation in program's fundraising efforts
  • Time commitment of 4-6 hours per week on average (some weeks are less and some are more) 
  • Attendance at reorientation meetings after the service experience 
  • Participation in Alternative Breaks program wide days of service before and/or after the trip 
After this application closes, please allow 2 weeks to receive a decision. If you are selected as a participant, you are expected to begin fulfilling your role immediately after you are contacted by your service experience leaders which typically occurs quickly after you receive your decision (within 2-5 business days).  
If you have any questions about the service experiences, the application, or the selection process, please email
We look forward to reviewing your application!
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Your Information

Thank you for your interest in the GW Alternative Breaks Program! Please carefully read all information below as you continue.


This application is currently rolling admission meaning that anyone can apply at any time. Please allow 2 weeks after you submit your application to receive a response.

Service Experience Fees Waived

All service experiences are free to participants and leaders. There are no fees associated with the Alternative Breaks program this year. However, participants and leaders are expected to participate in program wide fundraising efforts throughout the academic year.

General Information

Please write your first name.
Please write your middle name.
Please write your last name.
Examples include she/her, he/him, they/them
This will be used to contact you in the future if you no longer use your GW email address
Where you reside during distance learning. If living on campus, please provide residence hall and room number.
Please feel free to also include minors and/or concentrations if applicable
Please indicate yes/no. If yes, please also indicate proficiency (i.e. native speaker, fluent, conversational, basic ability).
This includes, but is not limited to: student organizations, past Alternative Break trips, service experience, etc.

Optional Demographic Questions

Participant Agreements

Trip Preferences and Essay Questions

All service experiences for the 2020-2021 year will be during the Spring 2021 semester and will consist of local service in the District of Columbia and virtual service. Precise community partners have yet to be determined, however, the issue areas listed below will be maintained. Below are the descriptions of each service experience including if they are hybrid or fully virtual and when the service will take place (over the whole spring semester or mostly during spring break).

Border Relations and Immigration - Our service will be spread out over several weekdays/weekends (based on participant availability) during the Spring 2021 semester, as well as, several days during Spring break. We will discuss and learn about topics such as: push and pull factors for people from Latin America to come to the US (NAFTA, foreign policy), immigrant integration into the US (difficulties of it).

Community Empowerment and Systemic Racism - The significant portion of service will occur during spring break - This experience will provide participants with a comprehensive analysis of systemic racism by engaging critically with various institutions. By listening, connecting, and learning from individuals and organizations involved in combating institutional racism, participants will gain the knowledge and skills to empower communities at home and D.C.

Disaster Relief and Sustainability - Service will spread throughout the spring semester - In this service project we will spend time learning primarily about sustainability and how it is used in different facets of daily life. One unique way we will look at it is through the lens of coffee farming in Costa Rica. Additionally, we will look to see how natural disasters affect these sustainability measures and how living a more sustainable life can work to mitigate these large scale environmental changes.

Indigenous Rights and Education - The significant portion of service will occur during spring break - This is a hybrid virtual and in-person, health precautions yielding, service experience that focuses on indigenous rights and education. We will focus on the rights of indigenous populations across the United States more generally, the indigenous groups that live in the DC, Maryland, and Virginia area, and advocacy for indigenous rights, access, and educational opportunities.

For your first preference, please limit response to 250 words. For your second, third, and fourth preferences, please limit your responses to 100 words EACH.
Please limit your response to 100 words.
Please limit your response to 250 words.
Please be sure to note the role of inclusion as it relates to servant leadership and limit your response to 250 words.