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K-State Today

March 13, 2014

Two student groups combine forces for alternative spring break service project

Submitted by Ray Yunk

The K-State Associated General Contractors of America student chapter, or AGC, and the K-State Habitat for Humanity student chapter are teaming up to construct low-income housing in Goldsboro, N.C., during spring break.

Bradley Halbleib, Associated General Contractors of America student chapter Alternative Spring Break coordinator, was instrumental in planning this year’s event. It marks the sixth consecutive year that the student chapter has conducted the spring break project.

Starting in 2009, the general contractors student chapter made three consecutive annual spring break trips to New Orleans to assist with reconstruction following the Hurricane Katrina disaster. In 2012 the group traveled to Joplin, Mo., to help with the tornado relief effort. Last year’s trip was to St. Louis, Mo., to assist Rebuilding Together-St. Louis with the renovation of low income housing.

This year’s alternative spring break trip to North Carolina was organized by Halbleib through Habitat for Humanity International, which — among other functions — serves as a clearinghouse for local chapters looking to host an event for university student groups over their respective spring breaks.

Both student organizations gained valuable experience through a recently completed home build in Ogden by the Manhattan Area Habitat for Humanity affiliate, headed by Roxann Janes, executive director. This project was the impetus behind the Associated General Contractors student chapter inviting the Habitat for Humanity student chapter to join them for this year’s alternative spring break service project.

More than 20 students will depart at 4:30 a.m. Saturday for the 21-hour trek to Goldsboro, N.C. The group will work Monday through Friday building a new Habitat for Humanity home, and then begin the drive home Friday evening. The students will be accompanied by Ray Buyle, assistant professor of architectural engineering and construction science, and his wife Karen. Buyle serves as faculty advisor to both student organizations and is on the Building Committee for Manhattan Area Habitat for Humanity.

This year’s trip is being underwritten through a generous community service grant from Target that was awarded to the Associated General Contractors student chapter last fall. The grant is part of Target's ongoing effort to build strong, safe and healthy communities across the country. Since 1946, Target has given five percent of its profit through community grants and programs. Today that giving equals more than $4 million a week.

"At Target, we are committed to serving local communities where we do business," said Laysha Ward, president of Target's community relations. That's why we are proud to partner with K-State's AGC student chapter and Habitat for Humanity student chapter as we work to strengthen communities and enrich the lives of our guests and team members."