Luke Eaton, spotlighted by a shaft of light, smiles into the distance.
Luke Eaton, pictured here in Hulston Hall, led a Mizzou Alternative Breaks trip to Carter County, Missouri, in November 2018. Photo by Sam O’Keefe

Story and audio story by Erik Potter

In this audio story, Luke Eaton reflects on his expectations before going on his weekend service trip, his observations during the trip, and the lessons he has taken to heart afterward.

Mizzou sophomore Luke Eaton left for a service trip to Carter County, Missouri, knowing he would find a different kind of place than his suburban hometown of Lee’s Summit, Missouri.

Eaton and his other MAB trip mates smile at the camera from inside the van they're driving back to Columbia.
Eaton, left, and co–trip leader Paige Carpenter, right, drive their crew of six down to Carter County. Photo courtesy Luke Eaton

What he didn’t expect, as he helped sift through the belongings of a teenager whose home had been wrecked by a storm, was how much he would see of himself in the family he was serving and how much that would change him.

Eaton led the Mizzou Alternative Breaks (MAB) service trip over the weekend of Nov. 2–4, 2018. MAB aims to visit all 114 Missouri counties by 2020. Each in-state trip is organized with the help of the local University of Missouri Extension office, which has knowledge of local needs and resources.

Want to go on your own MAB trip?

Fall 2019 MAB applications are open through Sept. 3 for in-state weekend trips (held Nov. 1–3) and Thanksgiving-break trips (held Nov. 23–27).

Sam Hopp smiles at the camera outside the Student Center.

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Sam Hopp has volunteered for years. But it wasn’t until she served in an after-school program in a Washington, D.C., homeless shelter that it was personal.

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Chemistry, et al.

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A line of smiling faces peek above rows of seat backs in a school bus.

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