BEREA — Casey White of Mount Gilead was one of 19 caring Baldwin Wallace University students who dedicated their 2021 winter break to making a difference through the BW Alternative Break service program. The program facilitated diverse community engagement projects with student volunteers traveling to Chicago and South Bend, Indiana.
White, a graduate of Mount Gilead High School majoring in political science, volunteered to take part in the alternative break experience in Chicago, exploring issues facing youth whose potential is at risk due to traumatic circumstances. They partnered with the Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Child + Family Center (Rice Center), a therapeutic setting for young children with severe mental health and behavior challenges. The students worked with youth residents during daily classes and helped with a variety of holiday activities. The trip was planned and led by BW student Hunter Evans with support from BW staff adviser Cassidy Wagner.
The BW Alternative Break service program gives students the opportunity to volunteer, meet with community leaders and learn about social justice issues around the U.S. Participants commit to a six-week, pre-trip curriculum including issue education, organization orientation, team building and a full-day retreat on social justice and cultural competency.
Alternative Break is one of many programs organized by the David & Frances Brain Center for Community Engagement. Community groups interested in partnering with BW can contact the Center at 440-826-2403 or [email protected]
Baldwin Wallace University, founded in 1845, was one of the first colleges to admit students without regard to race or gender. An independent, coeducational university of 3,500 students, located in Berea, 12 miles from downtown Cleveland, BW offers students the cultural, educational and business advantages of a major metropolitan area.