About UD Alternative Breaks

Mission, Vision and Values

The University of Delaware Alternative Break (UDAB) organization immerses student-led teams in direct service and experiential learning with community organizations to increase knowledge of social justice issues and encourage life-long active citizenship. UDaB programs consist of a weeklong experience to work with a community over winter or spring break. Each program has a focus area that ranges from the environment to domestic violence to disabilities and much more, and involves significant education of such focus area(s) before, during and after the alternative break. Partial scholarships are made available based on financial aid.

Mission and Vision

UDAB focuses on promoting social justice by providing opportunities for students to engage in mutually beneficial service with a vision to develop a community of active citizens.

Core Values

  • Community
    Our work strives to build an abundant community, recognizing the unique gifts and talents of every member. It strives to create equitable, inclusive and intentional spaces.
  • Diversity and Social Justice
    Our work strives to be welcoming and to value all people, not despite, but because of our differences. We value the strength in perspectives within diverse groups of people, and we do not see our work possible without learning from one another. Our work is built around equity and inclusion, ultimately contributing to the goal of a socially just world.
  • Mutually Beneficial Service
    Our work strives to create partnerships that address community-identified needs and support local community organizers, while promoting an educational and developmental experience for student participants. We work in solidarity with the community organizations and individuals we encounter, striving to promote allyship and engagement before, during and after the alternative break experience.
  • Intentionality
    Our work strives to align our mission and vision with all four actions. We aim to cultivate values-based decisions and leadership.


UDAB began in 2010 and piloted its first program during the 2011 spring break. In that first year, 92 students participants and 12 student leaders traveled to five communities to pursue service projects. In 2017, 538 student participants and 56 student leaders traveled to 24 communities over winter and spring break, contributing almost 18,000 hours of service and learning an immeasurable amount from those they served.

Please Consider a Donation to UDAB

UDAB has been the recipient of support from the families and friends of participants. We are grateful for all the support from the University community and contributions from donors.

(Be sure to select the “Other” category then search for UDAB.)

Originally I joined UDAB more as a social outlet, but what I found was a community of love that kept bringing me back.

Sam Dobbs '17

I’ve been with UDAB for 4 years. Tremendous group of people, well led, and what’s amazing is when they show up on day one, they are already a group. They come as a block for a week. That’s a lot of work hours and they are all good quality work hours. What more can you ask for?

Tom Baxter

Community Partner, Habitat for Humanity

Meet Senior Leadership

Executive Board

Malika Iyer

Pronouns: she/her

Malika is a senior mechanical engineering major from Lagos, Nigeria. Her first experience in an alternative break program was in Spring 2022 with Habitat for Humanity in New Bern, North Carolina, and she absolutely loved it, which is why she is so passionate about coming back as a site leader and now as a senior leader. She is and always has been passionate about social justice issues and wants to make a positive change in any which way she can. On campus, she is also involved with BHLP, HENS and much more. In her free time, she likes to read, find new places to visit, and spend time with her friends. She is so excited for the programs this year and can’t wait!

Adam Kerzner

Pronouns: he/him

Adam is a senior biology major from Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania. He enjoys exercising, playing and watching sports, such as soccer and basketball, and hanging out with friends. He joined UDAB in his sophomore year and went on a week-long trip building homes for Habitat for Humanity. He then returned as a site leader for the Baltimore, MD, children’s literacy program in 2023. He loved both of his experiences and cannot wait to be a senior leader for this upcoming year.