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UVU Service Expedition Heading to Mexico in May

25 January 2010 No Comment

January 25, 2010
For Immediate Release

For more information: Mike Moon (801) 863-6030
University Marketing & Communications: Erin Spurgeon, (801) 863-6807
Written by: Alex Strickland (801) 863-6351

Twenty Utah Valley University students will kick off their summer break not by hitting the famous beaches south of the border, but by travelling Mexico to participate in a weeklong service trip. The sojourn will take students to Queretaro, Mexico three weeks after the spring semester ends where they will help with building projects in the impoverished region.

“It’s a work trip, but hopefully will give practical application to academics as well as help this community become more self-sufficient,” said Mike Moon, the Program Coordinator at UVU’s Volunteer & Service-Learning Center.

The UVU trip is operated in conjunction with Family to Family Humanitarian Expeditions, a nonprofit that focuses on helping participants focus their academic learning in a practical application. Students will be helping lay cement in several homes that currently have only dirt floors, start construction on a community learning center that will provide residents with a place to learn everything from English to agriculture to job skills and teach in local classrooms.

“One of our goals is to keep the trip’s projects open to the dynamics of group that signs up to go,” Moon said. “For instance, if a large number of elementary education students sign up, we’ll try to get into the schools more.”

Moon said the last service learning trip to Mexico was in 2001 and the most recent international service trip was a 2005 journey to Russia. But despite that hiatus, just two days after signs advertising the Mexico trip were hung around campus, about half the slots were already spoken for.

“We hope it will be something that will be more commonplace and available to students in the future,” he said.

The trip will cost $950 per student and run from May 18-25. Cost includes airfare, transportation, lodging and food for the trip and the first $250 deposit must be paid by Feb. 1. Students must also attend three mandatory meetings that begin on Feb. 3. For more information, contact Mike Moon at (801) 863-6030, in LC 209 or at mike.moon@uvu.edu.

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