Full-time Aquinas/UDM students who are committed to service and making a difference are invited to apply. Participants are expected to attend all pre- and post-trip meetings with their small group as well as Service-Learning program large group events.  Following the trip, participants are expected to share their experiences with others.

Yes, you are welcomed and encouraged to apply for more than one trip.   List your trips in preferred order.  Applying for multiple trips increases your chances of being selected.  While you may be selected for more than one trip, you will only be charged for the one trip.

At the start of each academic year, we open applications to students. Applications must be received by the deadline to be given full consideration. Student leaders for your first choice trip review your application. If they determine you are a good candidate for the trip, you will be contacted and offered an interview for that trip. If there are too many applicants, they will pass your application on to your second and/or third choice trips. Do not be discouraged if you do not get an interview for your first choice trip. Some trips are very popular and we have limited spots. We hope you will keep an open mind about participating in other service learning trips.  

If you are selected for an interview, you will meet with one or more student leaders at a set date, time and place.  Arrive on time and follow through with your interview.  The student leaders want a chance to get to know applicants on a more personal basis, and this is their chance to do so.  You can expect questions and conversations about service, the specific trips themselves and group dynamics.  More than anything, the student leaders want to make sure all selected applicants are a good fit with each program.  Following the interview, student leaders discuss their selections and, in conjunction with the Office of Service-Learning, try to fill spots with as many interested and qualified applicants as possible.

An application and interview are typically required for participation in a trip. If you are selected for a trip, you will be notified by the student leader(s) and invited to a pre-trip orientation meeting.  

You may be placed on a waiting list for the trip, depending on how many applicants we have.  If you are open to the possibility of going on another trip that may have space, we will try our best to work with you to make that happen.  If someone is unable to go on a trip and you are on the waiting list, we may contact you to offer you that spot.

Program cost varies based on the trip. Individual costs can be found on the specific trip pages. Students enrolled with Student Support Services may qualify for program fee sponsorship funds.  Check with SSS for additional info.  International trip participants are expected to fundraise through letter writing and group fundraiser events.  Group fundraising further reduces student program fees.     

The program fee is applied to your student account and is due on the date listed on your payment contract.  Unless otherwise arranged with student accounts office, all program fees must be paid prior to trip departure.    

Pre-trip meetings help the group get to know each other and build community.  Important details about the program are discussed such as departure time, what to bring list, etc.  We spend time learning about the people we’ll be working with, the communities we’ll be going to, relevant social issues, catholic social teaching and more.  We give thanks for God’s love and ask God to open our hearts and minds to serve.  International trip meetings also include planning for fundraising events.  We will also have you complete a health information sheet, forms and waivers.  We will collect a copy of your driver’s license (if you will serve as a driver), your passport (for international travel), and other required forms.  Some programs require prior training completion (Ex. Safe Environment training). 

We encourage all students who have the desire to be a student leader to apply. Student leader applications are available during the spring semester after spring break for the following year trips.  You can also email/contact us any time to let us know you’re interested!  For more information, please contact Eric Bridge at bridgeri@aquinas.edu

We would love to hear about it! Please contact Eric Bridge at bridgeri@aquinas.edu with any ideas!  We’d want to discuss things such as fit with Aquinas’ mission, if it’s feasible, what service and social issue(s) are involved, location, cost, staffing, etc.    

Our trips serve a variety of issues, from international medical to urban home repair. There is something for nearly every interest!  Trip specific information can be found on the individual trip pages. 

Fall service-learning trips take place during fall break, spring service trips take place during spring break, and summer trips will take place in either May or June.

Transportation costs are included in the trip cost. For the domestic trips we drive and for international trips we fly to destinations.   

Applications can be found on the Service Learning page.

Participant fees and fundraising are two main sources of program funding. However, Aquinas College also provides support along with generous donors.  Please consider giving to Aquinas College Service Learning to support these valuable programs that allow students to have such impactful experiences.