Past AB Trips

Explore the previous Alternative Breaks to view the vast perspectives of student experiences.

Past Trips

Lessons from the Border in Arizona

Led by Roman Parajon '22 & Dani Quezada '22


"The Arizona ASB trip taught me to lean into discomfort, embrace the unknown, and find peace regardless of the challenges ahead. Our community partners focused on providing humanitarian aid to migrants and showed us the desperate need for justice in the US-Mexico borderlands. They exposed me to many unique perspectives, which in the end, all allowed me to formulate my own thoughts and reflect on the experiences I had gained. From small moments like writing motivational messages on water jugs to big moments like traversing hundreds of miles of the Sonoran Desert for water tank refilling, ASB has instilled a burning desire in me to continue engaging in public service and pursing positive social change." – Khalil Kilani '25, ASB participant 

Beyond Stereotypes: Queerness in Appalachia

Led by Zoe Guyot '22 & Melissa Magrath '22


"My experience on the “Beyond Stereotypes: Queerness in Appalachia” trip transformed how I think about what it means to be queer. In our pre-service seminars, our trip leaders introduced us to the concept of metronormativity—a potentially harmful conception that queer people must move from intolerant rural areas to accepting urban areas. This trip challenged my own meteronormative assumptions. Our informative visits with the Western North Carolina AIDS Project, an LGBTQ+ community center farmhouse, and other organizations demonstrated that queer people can thrive in rural spaces. I’m so grateful for this experience—and for the fantastic North Carolinians and Bowdoin students that I got to meet along the way." – Rory Devlin '23, ASB trip participant 

Cultivating Community in Immokalee, FL

Led by Emily Pan '22 & Julia Perillo '22


"Talking to Immokalee locals, I heard storie that could have been straight out of a history textbook if history classes talked about the modern-day slavery and history of inequity that migrant farmers face. I genuinely think that I have thought about this trip every day since returning home, whetehr that is about how I consume my food or the great people in the Bowdoin community that I may otherwise have never met. I don't think there has been a single moment that I've regretted spending my spring break in and around a farmhouse in Immokalee, Florida." – Ilo Holdridge '25 ASB participant


The Alternative Break program has a successful and exciting history. The first trip sponsored through the McKeen Center (formerly the Community Service Resource Center) traveled to Peru in 2002. Since then, the program has grown exponentially. In 2010, the Alternative Winter Break projects were added. In 2018, 89 Bowdoin students traveled to 8 destinations. Through all this time, these trips have been designed and led exclusively by students. See below link for descriptions of all the past trips. 

Complete list of past Alternative Break projects