Habitat's Collegiate Challenge 1997: Students Apply Classroom Learning to Help Others
February 5, 1997 - Over 6,000 college and high school students nationwide are preparing to take a break from the academic rigors of the classroom to learn how to use their education to help those in need. As spring break approaches, these students are getting ready to join Habitat for Humanity's Collegiate Challenge  from February 16 through April 5 for this program which encourages students to use their break time to build homes in a spirit of faith and partnership.
A student from the University of Virginia sums it up: "After a week of sanding and spackling, I have learned so much...about commitment, love and dedication." Like the estimated 23,300 other college and high school students who have participated in the Collegiate Challenge since 1990, she has found that the lessons of her formal education do not always provide the sense of perspective and meaning she has gained through the experience of service-learning.
Collegiate Challenge is a year-round program that is coordinated by the Campus Chapters and Youth Programs  department of Habitat for Humanity International. The program, which attracts the most students during spring break, offers students from across the country the experience of home-building construction. Individuals will work alongside homeowners and other volunteers to build homes from the foundation up.
Last year, students from over 250 schools traveled to more than 120 different locations in the United States. $400,000 was raised by the students to help affiliates build homes and hope. The participation in this year's Collegiate Challenge is expected to be even greater.
Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian organization dedicated to eliminating poverty housing worldwide. Habitat works in partnership with people in need to build simple, decent shelter that is sold to them at no profit, through no-interest loans. Founded in 1976 by Millard and Linda Fuller, Habitat for Humanity International has built over 50,000 homes around the world.