Nine APSU students volunteered in Guatemala in May, focusing on building an expansion for a children’s waiting room at a clinic according to a press release.
The students made the trip to Antigua, Guatemala on Saturday, May 16 to spend a week engaging in volunteer work and learning about Guatemalan culture. According to the blog written by the volunteers, the students mixed the cement manually and built two floors and three walls for the clinic.
Collectively, they donated over 200 hours for community service through APSU’s new Center for Service-Learning and Community Engagement, according to a press release. The Center provided this international opportunity at a reasonable price due to a number of grants it obtained.
In addition to their volunteer work at the clinic, the students blogged that they climbed a volcano, used real-world application of their skills speaking Spanish and explored the city, filling their blog with several pictures of intricate architecture, cobblestone streets and smiling faces.
One of the bloggers, Jennifer Herndon, focused her blog on “how very spoiled, as well as blessed I am to be an outsider here looking in” during their visit to Guatemala, mentioning, “Wi-Fi is not in every home, water must be purified before drinking it, there is no air conditioning and television is not readily available.”
Prior to the trip, the students spent a semester learning about the culture and language in Guatemala, though the blog indicated there was still a degree of culture shock mostly due to a lack of traffic laws out on the roads of Guatemala.
According to the press release, there are a variety of service projects scheduled in the alternative break program through the 2015-2016 academic year. These trips are handled by the Center for Service-Learning and Community Engagement, which has additional information on the APSU website.