During spring break 2014, members of MAPS participated in the Alternative Spring Break (ASB) trip organized by Campus Ministries. In fact, five of the seven Barry students who participated this year were MAPS members. This year's trip to Kingston, Jamaica was a very humbling experience for our members.
The week kicked off with a Sunday Family Day service, a lively celebration of life through song and scripture. Following the service, ASB participants visited the homebound parishioners - seniors, the sick, blind and amputees. They spent time talking with them, offering to help with household chores but the parishioners were content and grateful for their presence and instead opted to sing with and pray for the students. Students also had the opportunity to visit the neighborhood clinic and learn about the medical needs of the community. They also participated in the Meals on Wheels program, helping to prepare the meals, pack and distribute them in the neighborhood.
MAPS members who participated in this year’s ASB trip all agree that their week was extraordinary on many levels. “I really feel an experience like this should be required at some point during every student's undergraduate education.” said junior biology major and MAPS Student National Medical Association liaison Alejandro Tobón, for whom this was his second ASB trip. “The amount of information you learn about culture, people, history, food, politics, education, health, and about yourself is much more valuable than what you can obtain from simply reading a book. The experience brings out the best in you, your true character and beauty. It invigorates you and makes you a more conscious global citizen.”