Campus Community Has Fun with Annual Jail n' Bail Event

April 05, 2010

Dr. Steve Kramer's Social Responsibility class held its annual Jail n' Bail event last week to raise money to cover expenses incurred during their recent spring break service trip to Honduras.


Harry Paidas, vice president of public affairs and marketing, is willing to pay to avoid being taken to jail by "Sheriff" Steve Kramer.

Harry Paidas, vice president of public affairs and marketing, is willing to pay to avoid being taken to jail by "Sheriff" Steve Kramer.

During the trip, the students worked on the construction of two houses in a remote town approximately 45 minutes northeast of the capital city of Tegucigalpa. The project was through Habitat for Humanity International, which has already constructed 4000 such homes in Honduras.

The class, which consisted of 12 students, prepared for the trip by learning some Spanish so that they could converse with the local residents, particularly those whose homes they were constructing. The homes were approximately half the size of the typical Habitat for Humanity home, but according to Kramer, professor of psychology at the College, these news homes were considered substantial next to the typical homes in the region.

"The majority of homes in the area were very simple with none of what we consider to be the minimal requirements for housing in the United States," said Kramer. He went on to explain that some of the homes had as many as 12 people living in them, and none had running water.

Upon their return to campus, the students complete journals, describing their experiences and what they learned. One theme that was repeated often, according to Kramer, was how amazed the students were at how well adjusted and happy the people seemed to be, despite their overwhelming poverty.

The class was able to raise a little over $1000 through the Jail n' Bail event. After collecting funds and "arrest warrants" ($1 per person to be "arrested"), Kramer and the students from his class spent the day canvassing the campus - some of them dressed in sheriff attire - arresting students, faculty and staff. The person being arrested could either spend a short amount of time in the makeshift jail located in the Hoover-Price Campus Center or pay $2 bail. The person could also pay $3 to forgo the jailing entirely.

"We have been fortunate in years past to have raised money through the Jail n' Bail event, and this year we were again able to reach our goal of raising $1000," said Kramer. "In addition, I think that the campus community had a lot of fun with the event, particularly knowing that it funds a worthy cause."

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