Alternative Breaks.
Learn, Build, Grow

Alternative Break Trips give students an opportunity to learn about pertinent social issues, build new relationships, and grow as catalysts for change.

Serving others is the backbone of true leadership. Alternative Breaks give Emory students the chance to turn a scheduled break from classes into an uncharted learning adventure. By immersing themselves in a community over the course of Spring or Fall Break, students form small teams (about 12 people) to  tackle social justice issues around the state and the southeast. The extended service time provides a deeper connection between students and the community, which in turns provides better outcomes for those in need. If you're a leader, Spring and Fall breaks are the perfect time to lean in and serve others.



Alterative Break Experiences 

What better way to understand the power and possibilities of Alternative Breaks than by learning from our past experiences. Our trips change every semester. If you are interested in a particular theme, apply to lead a trip! Here are two examples.

An Intersectional Approach to Healthcare Disparities in Charleston

What's it like in areas with severe healthcare divides? How do underserved communities deal with the realities of today's healthcare system? To find out while lending a hand, Emory Alternative Break students immersed themselves in the daily activities of Charleston-based clinics that provide free healthcare to underserved communities. Students worked with centers devoted to improving mental health and organizations that help kids and mothers find safe housing, food, and other resources. By transforming their fall break into a difference-making opportunity, students took on the issue of healthcare disparity first-hand.

Homelessness and Gender Inequality in Chattanooga and Nashville

From food insecurity, to inadequate health care and safety, the effects of homelessness are among the most harmful circumstances a human can endure. Although thousands of organizations across the US battle homelessness, still around 500,000 people are homeless in America today. That's why Alternative Break students traveled to Tennessee to engage with and serve this vulnerable community. Students worked in shelters, food banks, and affordable housing agencies to meet the daily needs of the homeless while building connections through one-on-one interaction.


Alternative Breaks have been taking place at Emory for almost a decade.  The Alternative Break program was started to engage and challenge students to step beyond campus and Atlanta to engage in the wider community of the South East. 

Leaders, Staff, Student Workers

Byron Jones

Director, Student Led Community Engagement

Margot Bailowitz

Director of Alternative Breaks