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BU Students Trade In Spring Break Partying For Volunteering

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By Faith Jessie.
Spring break is right around the corner, but one Bingahamton University sophomore from Japan said going home wasn't an option for just one week.

"I didn't have any plans for spring break My friends just leave for NYC city," said Asuka Sakaguchi, BU sophomore.

Last year, rather than partying or going home for spring break, Sakaguchi, along with 20 other international students at BU opted for Alternative Spring Break, a two day event where students volunteer with non-profits around the Southern Tier.

"It's really a great opportunity to know about what they are doing outside of school and the area of Binghamton.

The program, sponsored by BU's Center for Civic Engagement and the International Student Scholar Service Department, has given international students an opportunity to volunteer at places like Southern Tier Alternative Therapy and the Family Enrichment Network.

"We're raking we're planing we're doing a lot of outside type cleanup work for not for profits. It strengthens their language skills, they learn about not for profits they also learn about some people in the Triple cities that are maybe not as well off as they are some disadvantaged people," said

Sakaguchi says working with Southern Tier Alternative Therapy last year not only helped her to see more of community but gave her the opportunity to become a helpful part of it.

"I remember the owner of the therapy were pretty happy about what we were doing. So I felt like I could give back to them, even if it was a small thing. So I think it can help change a little bit."

A positive change that Sakaguchi hopes she can create again this year.