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St. Thomas Pay It Forward Tour

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Chapters/The Pay it Forward Tour

The Pay it Forward Tour

Interested in learning more about some of the specifics of the trip? Look no farther!

As mentioned before, a PIF Tour takes 35-45 Spartans on a bus to volunteer and explore 6 Cities over 9 days, led by a group of 5 bus cores or leaders. The trip starts the Friday before the official start of Spring Break. The departure time and location varies, but is oftentimes in the early afternoon from the MSU Auditorium (the specifics will be communicated to you as the trips come closer). 

Have class on that Friday? Some professors will accept a class excuse note, which we are more than happy to write. Simply send us a quick email at MSU@STLF.net including the professor's name and email, and the class title and section number. Please submit your request at least one week prior to the date of the trip's departure.

A Typical Day

While no day and timing of events is the same, each one leading up to arriving in the end destination follows a schedule similar to the one below

Wakeup and Eat Breakfast (~30 Minutes)

Packup and head to volunteer site (~.5-1 Hour)

Volunteer (3-4 Hours)

Free time to explore and eat in city (3-5 Hours)

Return to Bus and head to next city (2-5 Hours)

Free Time and Dinner (~1-2 hours)

End of the day activities (~2-3 Hours)

Free Time, Sleep, and Repeat

End Destination

Once you arrive in the end destination, Washington D.C., this year, you will stay in the city for two nights and work on a volunteering project with participants from multiple other buses! These projects can involve anywhere from 100 to more than 300 volunteers and help to make a massive impact. 

Following the second night in the destination city, you'll board the bus once again and head to a city somewhere between East Lansing and Washington D.C. You won't have a chance to volunteer here, and there is no guarantee you will be able to see the city you're staying in. After staying at this midpoint city for a night, you will return to East Lansing, generally arriving in the afternoon or early evening. 

Volunteering Projects

During the course of the trip, you'll volunteer in each of the cities, working on different projects in each one. Rather than focusing on helping one organization or addressing one social issue, you will be given a chance to work with different organizations, helping them address a variety of issues. 

Just a few of the service opportunities we've had include:

Sorting and packing food at food banks that feed thousands 

Interacting with residents of a retirement home community to brighten their day

Supporting conservation initiatives by planting trees or protecting the diminishing coastline

Working with homeless shelters to improve the condition of various housing services  

The specific projects vary by city and by route, but we can guarantee you won't be working on the same type of project the entire week. A few weeks prior to the trip your bus leaders will communicate what to expect for the projects (i.e. if you should bring clothes you don't mind getting dirty, or closed toe shoes, etc.). But you won't know the exact project until you arrive at the site the day of.

Still have questions? Contact us at MSU@STLF.net

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