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History of Panther Breakaway at Georgia State University

To see photos from previous seasons, check out our Trips page.

During spring break of 2002, Georgia State conducted its first Panther Breakaway, sending 12 students and 4 staff to Washington D.C. This first group of students worked with the National Coalition for the Homeless and Capital Area Food Bank, assisting homeless individuals. They also served persons affected by HIV/AIDS at the Whitman-Walker Clinic.

In 2003, 8 students and 2 staff traveled to St. Lawrence Place in Columbia, South Carolina, a transitional housing facility for homeless families. The group spent the week tutoring and playing with children in an after-school program and maintaining the grounds at St. Lawrence Place.

In 2004, the Office of Community Service (now Civic Engagement) devised a more structured Panther Breakaway program for Georgia State students and the communities they serve. The office began a selection process for program leaders, creating an application and interview process for new leaders. Chosen leaders perform out-of-state summer training as part of their position. PB also created a website, which is maintained in cooperation with the Division of Student Affairs.

2005 took Georgia State crews to Jacksonville, FL for the Urban Mission Experience. There, they worked on the Wildlife Refuge Project at the Everglades Hostel. They took photos for the program for the first time, excited to get some great shots of Georgia State students and the positive work they contributed.

In 2006, Panther Breakaway doubled in participation from the previous year. 49 students participated in 3 trips. 27 students went down to New Orleans to help tackle some the issues created by Hurricane Katrina. 12 students headed to Kissimmee, Florida to help disabled children at a community amusement theme park, and 10 students partnered with the University of Central Florida to work on urban poverty issues in Orlando.

In 2007, Panther Breakaway participation went up from the previous year. More than 50 students participated! A group of students went down to New Orleans to help tackle some of the issues created by Hurricane Katrina and education. Other students from the same group helped prepare local elementary school students for upcoming LEAP Testing. A number of students also went to Clear water, Florida where they engaged in several environmental activities. The third location students visited was St. Louis, Missouri where they assisted with HIV/AIDS work.

Look for membership applications and monthly newsletter, Panther Breakaway in the Office of Civic Engagement, Room #320, 3rd floor Student Center.

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