Habitat for Humanity


Gustavus Habitat for Humanity works with local affiliates and chapters from around the country to build affordable housing for families in need. The Gustavus chapter provides the opportunity for alternative breaks (fall and spring), Act! Speak! Build! Week, and various local service opportunities throughout the year.


Habitat for Humanity strives to meet the needs of affordable housing through building, fund raising, advocacy, education and organizing consistent with our values of community, compassion, service, engagement and teamwork.

Spring Break Home-Building Trip - April 1-8, 2023

2023 Sites will be revealed on Tuesday, November 15 at 10:00am in the Dining Room! Applications will be available at the table outside the Caf after the 10:00am reveal and then at the Community Engagement Center. Site preference is based on the number of the application/first come - so if you want your first choice, pick up your application asap! Applications are due on Monday, November 28 in the Community Engagement Center

2023 Spring Break Sites: Taos, NM; Houston TX, Thibodaux, LA; Elizabethtown, KY; Winston-Salem, NC

Click on the pic below for a Video Reveal of 2023 Spring Break Habitat locations!


Recap Video of 2022 Spring Break Trips! 

2022 Spring Break sites were: Amarillo, TX; Loveland, CO; Lexington, VA; and Bel Air, MD

2019 Spring Break sites were Mobile, AL; Taos, NM; Vail Valley, CO; and Johns Island, SC.

2018 Spring Break sites were Winston-Salem, NC, Taos, NM and Lafayette, LA. Check out our reveal video! and this local news article from the Winston-Salem trip.

Applications for 2023 Trip Advisor for faculty and staff: Trip Advisor Application

Trip Advisor guidelines: Habitat for Humanity Trip Advisor Guidelines

Fall Break Home-Building Trip

Over fall break (October 21-25) a small group of Gusties traveled to Fort Thompson, SD to the Dacotah Tipis Habitat for Humanity site. Photos coming soon!

Annual Activities

  • We work with local chapters, including St. Peter, Mankato and Nicollet, on their Habitat houses. We typically help build on Saturdays when needed and can take between 5-15 volunteers depending on the job.
  • We raise funds throughout the year to support the program and individual costs for participating in alternative spring breaks. Offering valet parking for the Nobel Conference every fall is one example.
  • Act, Speak, Build week is in the spring where we build a shed on campus to donate to the St. Peter Habitat house (the house is built by students at the St. Peter High School). In the past, we have brought speakers and politicians to campus to talk about homelessness and poverty issues.
  • Every spring break, Gustavus sends close to 100 students to Habitat for Humanity affiliate sites to participate in the Collegiate Challenge, an alternative break program. Students travel across the country to spend a week constructing houses and rebuilding communities. The Collegiate Challenge is one of Gustavus Habitat for Humanity's biggest successes each year by getting volunteers to spend their time in a meaningful and rewarding way while raising awareness on housing issues across the nation. 

Coordinators for 2022-2023
Name Role Gustavus Email Address
Claudia Giedd President  cgiedd@gustavus.edu
Sophie Norman Fall/Spring Break Work Trip Coordinator sophienorman@gustavus.edu
Chelsy Johnson Fall/Spring Break Work Trip Coordinator chelsyj@gustavus.edu
Audrey Christiansen Volunteer Coordinator achristiansen@gustavus.edu
Mia Eisenbacher Public Relations miaeisenbacher@gustavus.edu
Liz Kirchner Public Relations ekirchne@gustavus.edu
Maria Sylvester Outreach & Education/Act!Speak!Build! Week marias@gustavus.edu
Teddy Johnson Outreach & Education/Act!Speak!Build! Week tjohns31@gustavus.edu