Alternative Break Site Leaders

Help strengthen CCEL's Alternative Break program by applying to be a Site Leader for a March 2018 Alternative Break. Site Leaders will work in pairs alongside a CWRU staff learning partner to enhance the education, service, reflection, and group bonding experience for the break. The total time commitment for Site Leaders is approximately 2-4 hours per week for about 7 weeks, with most of the work being concentrated in the two months prior to the break.

Site Leader responsibilities


  • Attend the Site Leader training on Friday, January 19, 2018 from 4:45 to 7:15 p.m. in the CCEL office (dinner provided). Site Leaders are strictly required to attend the entire duration of this training to maintain their spot in the program.
  • Help promote the break to other students.
  • Research the nonprofit(s) and locations where you will be serving as well as the community issue that will be the focus of your break.
  • Design and lead three pre-trip sessions in February that build a collaborative team amongst your break participants and that educate participants on your site and the community issue. You are welcome to integrate readings, film, guest lectures, and field trips into these pre-trip sessions. Some of the content is pre-determined by CCEL.
    • In order to maintain their spot in the program, Site Leaders must be available to attend the entire duration of the three pre-trip sessions that have been pre-determined for their specific break. Please see the details specific to your break for more information.
  • Determine what your reflection plan will be during the break.
  • Develop a plan for how you would like to reorient participants after the break and encourage them to stay civically involved locally.
  • Regularly check-in with the CCEL staff about ideas you may have for pre-trip sessions, reflection, reorientation, etc. A CWRU staff member will be on the break with you and will be a helpful resource to guide you through the process.

During Break

  • Be an engaged part of your group, and model appropriate behavior.
  • Actively work to include ALL participants in ALL activities and to create a safe, supported community amongst the group.
  • Encourage group cohesion and decision-making.
  • Facilitate a guided discussion each night through reflection about the daily service experience.
  • Make sure that your group arrives to the site on time and acts accordingly with the rules of that site.
  • Encourage picture taking (as appropriate), journaling, and blogging as a group and individually.
  • Create a plan for a post-break reorientation activity with your group.


  • Plan and carry out 1 reorientation effort post-break with your group in order to encourage participants to stay civically engaged in their local community.
  • Encourage participants to share their Alternative Break experiences with other CWRU students.
  • Complete a post-break survey.
  • Strive to be an active citizen and encourage your group members to do the same!
Benefits of being a Site Leader

By serving as a Site Leader, you will develop your personal leadership skills, deepen your understanding of a new region of the country and a community issue, and build close relationships that often maintain well after the break experience. Site Leaders will also earn a $150 stipend that will be automatically applied to the cost of your break. You will still be responsible for paying the remaining balance of your trip expenses.

How to apply

Interested students should complete the online Site Leader application by Friday, December 1; however, applicants will be interviewed on a rolling basis. If accepted, you will still be responsible for completing the other application requirements specific to your break as well as turning in remaining trip payments on time in order to maintain your spot.