Published: Feb. 19, 2014

New initiative connects Spartans with global experiences

Contact(s): Tom Oswald Media Communications office: (517) 432-0920 cell: (517) 281-7129, Patrick Hayes MSUglobal office: (517) 884-4598

A new Michigan State University initiative has begun that offers service opportunities to MSU alumni, faculty, staff and others around the world.

Volunteers accepted into the program, known as Spartans without Borders, will work with service agencies that address the needs of underserved populations.

The program begins with a pilot project in Mérida, México, April 4-13. Organizers are seeking volunteers who can help develop promotional materials and address communications/marketing/web needs of nonprofit organizations; conduct needs assessments and staff training related to the care of older adults; repair building damage; help teachers and students learn English; and much more.

The SWOB concept was conceived by Dale Elshoff, who serves as program director and is MSUglobal Entrepreneur-in-Residence. It’s designed to give the greater Spartan community opportunities to volunteer their time, talent and expertise to improve the quality of life in communities worldwide.

“This is a unique opportunity to mobilize with fellow Spartans and create innovative solutions to global challenges,” said Elshoff, who also is a specialist in the Department of Community Sustainability. “Spartans Without Borders leverages the skills and talents of the entire Spartan network to help improve the quality of life in communities around the globe.”

The Spartans Without Borders team is currently accepting applications for the Mérida, México, experience. Interested volunteers can apply through the website at Cost of the trip is $2,800 based on double occupancy and $3,100 if travelers prefer single occupancy.

In addition to the application, the Spartans Without Borders website features detailed descriptions of the project in Mexico, as well as upcoming ones in Belize and Detroit; a step-by-step application and acceptance overview; answers to frequently asked questions; and more information about the Spartans Without Borders organization.

For more information, email or call (517) 884-SWOB.


Our Commitment: Healing Assistant Fund - National organizations selected to oversee fund for counseling and services