In Their Natural Habitat: Friars Participate in Spring Break Service Trips

by The Cowl Editor on April 4, 2019


Habitat for Humanity provides Friars with the opportunity to give back to the community.

By Matthew Mazzella ’20

News Staff

This past spring break, Providence College students traveled across the East Coast to get their hands dirty and volunteer through Habitat for Humanity. These Friars made it their mission to give back to various communities and showcase what Providence College is all about.

Volunteer sites that Friars travelled to include Rockport, Maine, Bridgeport, Connecticut, Georgetown, Deleware, Mechanicsville, Virginia, York, Pennsylvania, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Kittanning, Pennsylvania.

Senior coordinator and group leader, Ryan O’Keefe ’19, had his calendar marked for this trip every year, as it is one of his most cherished activities as a PC student. 

O’Keefe elaborates on his passion for this trip by stating, “This was my fourth Habitat for  Humanity Trip, second as group leader, and first-time coordinator. Habitat for Humanity has held a special place in my heart over the four years here at Providence College and when I was offered the position to be the 2018-2019 coordinator a little over a year ago, I was absolutely ecstatic to accept. This year we had over 100 participants at eight different sites across the east coast, stretching from Maine down to Virginia.”

With so many students looking to volunteer, Habitat for Humanity is the perfect trip for Friars looking to give back and help out others.

Sarah Kerrigan ’20 loves the opportunity  that Habitat for Humanity offers to give back to those less fortunate. Kerrigan loves incorporating service into her spring breaks, which is exactly why she chose Habitat for Humanity. The trip was a rewarding experience for her, as she got to help out those who needed a helping hand, as well as meet some amazing people along the way. 

Kerrigan elaborated on her love for this trip by stating, “Habitat is the perfect way to spend spring break; it’s a total mixture of giving to those less fortunate, as well as meeting and working with some of the most amazing people who become lifetime friends.”

Paige Christianson ’20 is an annual volunteer on Habitat for Humanity trips, making this past spring break her third trip while at PC. Christianson looks forward to these trips every year; it is always the highlight of her spring break. 

She not only loves the friendships she builds along the way, but the lives she impacts by her vow to help others. Christianson described her love for these trips by saying, “Habitat is a way to help give others a fresh start with a new home, while making new friends and memories with fellow friars.”

The trip was a huge success, and many cities and towns benefitted from the help of PC students lending a helping hand.

O’Keefe reminisces on his final trip by saying, “The most beautiful thing about Habitat for Humanity is that no matter where you go, or who you are with, each participant is able to make the trip unique in their own way. A Habitat for Humanity spring break trip gives the participant a rare opportunity to escape the Providence College bubble and become humbled by the environment around them. That is why this program is near and dear to my heart and that’s why I keep coming back to serve for this special organization.”

With so many students raving about their trips and the impact it has had on their lives, students should consider making this trip a part of their spring break at Providence College. If you have any interest in next year’s upcoming trip, contact Campus Ministry for more information.