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Alternative Service Break

The Alternative Service Break (ASB) program is a unique learning experience in which students engage in direct service to a community while being immersed in the culture.

ASB Information Meetings

Check Back for Our Next Round of Info Meetings!
*Can’t make any of these times? Email Carly May at for a link to a recording of a virtual info session*


The Alternative Service Break (ASB) program is a unique learning experience in which students engage in direct service to a community while being immersed in the culture. Teams are led by student team-leaders and accompanied by faculty or staff advisors. Each team spends extensive time prior to travel doing team-building, planning for their experience, and studying the scope of their impact in the communities they will engage with. Throughout their travels, team members participate in a variety of cultural, educational, recreational, and reflective activities to enhance their service experience. During Fall/Winter/Spring/May break, our student groups serve in North Carolina, across the United States, and around the world. Teams sponsored by Student Leadership and Engagement and other campus partners focus on water quality and sanitation, affordable housing, youth education and empowerment, medical clinics, LGBTQ+ and civil rights, and environmental issues.

Goals of ASB

  • To develop and enhance a value for public service, civic engagement, and service-learning within the participants.
  • To develop diverse service teams committed to exploring and advocating for social justice issues.
  • To help participants reflect on their privileges and begin to use these to break down the systems that afford unearned privilege in our society.
  • To provide opportunities for participants to reflect on their roles in a global community.
  • To provide opportunities for cultural and language immersion through service projects with diverse individuals and communities.

Application Timelines

ProgramApplication Deadline Trip ApplicationTravel Award
Fall Break 2024August 26th – 11:59pmApplication OpenApplication Open Soon
Winter Break
August 26th – 11:59pmApplication OpenApplication Open Soon
Spring Break
October 1 – 11:59pmApplication Open SoonApplication Open Soon
May Break
January 17th – 11:59pmApplication Open SoonApplication Open Soon

Concerned about Paying for an Experience?

Our office desires to make every effort to remove barriers to students being able to participate in ASB, and there are a number of avenues through which financials barriers can be managed appropriately:

  • Travel Credits
    Student Leadership and Engagement has offered limited travel credits in the past to students via an application process. These credits are designed to offset the overall cost of an Alternative Service Break experience.
  • College of Engineering Students
    COE Enhancement Fee paying students whose majors are part of the College of Engineering may have the opportunity to receive some financial support for the travel portion of your ASB experience depending on funding availability.
  • Still concerned about how to pay?
    Please contact assistant director Carly May ( directly if you are still concerned or have questions about paying for Alternative Service Break experiences.

Passport and International Services

NC State University has its own Passport Services office right on campus! If you’re in need of applying for, updating, or have questions regarding your Passport for international travel, set up an appointment with Passport Services today in preparation for your ASB experience.

For international students considering an ASB experience, please be sure to consult with the Office of International Services and/or your respective embassy to ensure all documentation and permissions are in order prior to your commitment. All international students are responsible to being aware of the implications of traveling outside the United States while on their visa status.

Participant Resources

  • The Active Citizen Continuum is a model developed by Break Away, a national nonprofit, to display the stages of involvement in development and service work, from ‘Member’ to ‘Active Citizen.’
  • All ASB participants are educated through a classroom-style cohort in preparation for their experience. The Team Participant Manual outlines each step of important information for all travelers.
  • ASB participants take the CliftonStrengths assessment, a survey developed by Gallup designed to provide a language to discover, discuss, and activate one’s talents. Our office has two certified coaches to assist with digesting the assessment results, what they mean, and how they’re applied.


Email Carly May at for assistance!