Alternative Spring Break 2020

University of Michigan-Flint’s Alternative Spring Break program enables students to learn about issues such as homelessness, poverty, hunger, violence, environmental issues, and complex social and cultural issues. Students will listen to and understand community needs and continue a commitment to community service and social change.


The University of Michigan-Flint’s Alternative Spring Break is a University Outreach sponsored program that offers a community service learning experience on a local level during the traditional Spring Break of the academic calendar. Students spend time learning about complex social, cultural and environmental issues. During spring break, groups carpool to a selected site to engage in meaningful action toward a greater understanding of root causes of relevant issues. Students participate in critical reflection and analysis of social justice issues they experience first-hand.

The program is dedicated to providing break opportunities to as many students as possible, while striving to increase community impact and student learning and address societal problems with understanding and compassion. Critical elements of this process are recognizing community needs and assets while working in partnership with community members. Equally important is translating the experience into an understanding of the complexity and interconnectedness of social problems and making a commitment to being part of the long-term solution. Some of the sites that ASB have served are, but are not limited to: helping with hurricane Katrina cleanup, urban renewal with the Genesee County Land Bank and the Salvation Army, help with afterschool programming in local middle and elementary schools, serving meals at homeless shelters and also doing small construction projects.

Alternative Spring Break Options:

Impact Days

Impact Days are flexible to accommodate students with busy lives but still give students the opportunity to make an IMPACT in the Flint community. Instead of committing to a whole week, students will have the opportunity to choose which days they are going to volunteer. Days usually start around 10am and will end around 5pm. Lunch and transportation to and from sites will be provided.


This program is designed for students that want the vacation experience but still would like to serve the Flint community during their spring break. Students will participate in the same daily schedule as Impact Days participants however, instead of going home each night, students will stay in the Downtown Flint area.  Following the workday, students will explore downtown Flint and engage in group activities. All meals and transportation to and from sites will be provided. STAY-cation participants are required to stay the entire 4 days and 3 nights (Monday morning-Thursday evening).


Participant Fee



All payments can be made via cash, check or  money order and turned in to Gary Ashley on the 10th Floor of the Northbank Center. Checks must be payable to the University of Michigan-Flint and include the student's name and UMID in the memo. All payments are non-refundable. Payments not made by regular application and deadline are subject to the late payment cost of $20.


Sample Agenda

Typical Monday-Thursday daily agenda, subject to change.

Time Event

7:30 - 9:30 am

Breakfast and Morning Prep (Stay-cation)

9:30 - 9:45 am

Travel to UM-Flint (Stay-cation)

9:45 - 10:15 am


10:15 - 10:45 am

Energizers, Ice breakers and Team Building activities

10:45 - 11:45 am

Group Education Session

11:45 - 12:30 pm

Lunch Break

12:30 - 1:00 pm

Travel to Work Sites

1:00 - 5:00 pm


5:00 - 5:15 pm

Travel to UM-Flint

5:15 - 5:45 pm


5:45 - 7:00 pm

Group Dinner (Stay-cation)

7:00 - 9:00 pm

Night Activity (Stay-cation)

9:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Showers (Stay-cation)


Meet the Team

gary ashley, advisor

Gary Ashley earned a B.S. in Communications with a concentration in Human Relations from the University of Michigan-Flint in December 2005. Since then he has been employed at the University of Michigan-Flint and has held a number of positions. He started working in Alumni Relations and then moved to Institutional Advancement; he worked in each department for one year respectively. He is currently working in University Outreach and has a great deal of experience in partnering with departments within the university and organizations outside the university to help revitalize Genesee County. It is his personal mission to help Genesee County be a better place to live, work, play, etc.!