Students offered Civil Rights spring break trip

Hunter Campbell, Contributing Writer

Multicultural Student Services (MSS) is sponsoring a Civil Rights Alternative Spring Break Trip this coming spring from March 7-13. The group will visit historic sites in Mississippi, Arkansas, and Tennessee that were crucial to the Civil Rights Movement.

In Little Rock, Ark., students will visit Central High School, which gained national recognition during the fight for school desegregation during the Civil Rights Movement. In Holly Springs, Miss., students will visit the Ida B. Wells Museum, which acknowledges the life of noteworthy Civil Rights activist Ida B. Wells in her hometown. Students will also be given time to explore downtown Little Rock and Memphis on their own to get a feel for the rich culture that still exists in both cities.

“I think that for me, one of the biggest things I walked away with was the experience of actually being in places of such historical significance. Hearing about protests and marches in a classroom or a lecture is very different from actually being in those spaces,” Student Trip Leader Brittley Jernigan-Hardrick ’16, who participated in the trip last year, said. “Change can begin almost anywhere—a park, a church, a college campus. All of those extraordinary things were done by ordinary people, and a lot of them are still active members of their community.”

In addition to sightseeing, students will get the chance to actually interact with community members and give back.

“Students will partner with various community-based, national, and/or civic organizations, serving a variety of local constituents,” Jernigan-Hardrick said.

In past years, the group has worked with Meals on Wheels to prepare meals for local food banks.

The trip will be chaperoned by Vincent Stephens, director of MSS, as well as another faculty or staff member. Once students have been accepted to the trip, the group will hold fundraisers to raise money to put toward the overall cost of the trip.

In the fall, there will be several group events that will serve as bonding opportunities for the group. In the spring, there will be a few classroom sessions in which the group will be able to discuss background information and the importance of the sites they’ll be visiting.

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