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New Orleans Bound

Today may be cloudy, dreary, and cold, but all I can think of is a place that typically has 75 degree weather and sunny skies in February!  In just four weeks, my friend, Elizabeth, and I are leading a service trip to New Orleans during our Spring Break.  The Service Learning Department works year-round to give students the opportunity to sacrifice their spring break for a week of service.
Let’s take things back to last semester. I had three choices of how to spend my fall break: work, get fat at home, or a service-learning trip.  Seeing that I had already done the former two, why not try a whole week of service?  As I was browsing through the trips, the New Orleans trip caught my eye.  The service included spending time with K-8 students at a church founded by St. Katharine Drexel.  I couldn’t resist!  I applied and was accepted!
The trip was phenomenal. Eight other students and our adviser (Aquinas’ Director of Residence Life) were blown away by the instant community that was built, not only between ourselves, but between us and the city.  New Orleans has made an impact on all of us: St. Peter Claver School, the French Quarter, the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in the Lower Ninth Ward, and of course the world-famous beignets from Cafe Du Monde.  Somehow I knew that my fall break was not the last time I was going to be in the Big Easy.
Now, it is my turn to give back!  We are taking a total of 15 great students down to Louisiana in just 25 days!  Even though there is still so much work on my end, everyone’s eagerness and plans make the planning process beyond worthwhile.  Elizabeth and I are trying to keep traditions alive, but we are also trying to give this specific trip its own flair and dynamic.  Wish us luck!  By the way, please please PLEASE challenge yourself on a service learning trip here at AQ!

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