Quick Contact

Ronald Porter
Acting Director of Service-Learning

Eckerd College
Office of Service-Learning
4200 54th Avenue South
St. Petersburg, FL 33711


toll-free: (800) 456-9009
local: (727) 864-7512


Service Learning

Ecuador: Spring Break 09


View photos from Ecuador

We traveled by bus from Quito to Puyo and then to the Arutam reserve, where we worked and lived with the Shuar, an indigenous community. We arrived late at night. As we got off the bus we were welcomed by the Shuar in their traditional garb. The next morning we were initiated as "little warriors" and our faces were painted by Enrique and Rodrigo, whom we established close friendships with during our adventure.

The indigenous organization, Fundecoipa, is primarily concerned with the sustainable development of the Shuar community and the protection of the Amazon rainforest. We worked on several development projects; we built a path out of rocks, and a kitchen with wood that we carried down from the forest on several hikes. The work was physically challenging and extremely rewarding.

We worked hard, and we also learned a lot. We went on long hikes through the forest. The Shuar shared stories of their ancestors and anacondas. At the farewell ceremony we were taught the traditional Shuar dances, and we learned about medicinal plants. Our service trip to the Amazon in Ecuador was a life changing experience for all of us. None of us will ever forget the plantains, the mosquito nets, the watering hole, the mud that was impossible to get away from, the friendships; and most of all the spirit of the jungle, Arutam.

View photos from Ecuador

Experiencing Arutam from Kelly Schiller on Vimeo.

Reflective Service-Learning Portfolio

Triton Track

Current Calls to Action

Edible Peace Patch Project
Looking for something fun to do this summer? The Muscular Dystrophy Association is looking for volunteers for their summer camps! The camps will take place in Brandon, FL, June 21-27, and in Apopka, FL, July 12-18.
Interested? Contact Paula Orandash for more info at (727) 577-1700.
AIDS Walk Tampa Bay 2014
What are you and your friends doing to change the course of HIV in the Tampa Bay Region? By walking, donating or volunteering this year, you will help to provide much needed resouces to the AIDS Service Association of Pinellas (ASAP).
The 12th annual AIDS Walk Tampa Bay will be held at Vinoy Park in Downtown St. Petersburg on Saturday, September 6th. Registration starts at 8 a.m., and the walk starts at 10 a.m.

Notes from the Field

Servant Leaders blog
Service-Learning Interns blog
The service-learning student interns are increasing service involvement at Eckerd, becoming successful service leaders and helping students create a community around the values and challenges of servant-leadership.

Service Learning Profiles

Alumni Profiles

Read individual profiles of how involvement with Eckerd Service-Learning changed the lives of current students and alumni.  Learn more.