TU Students Lend Hand to Lexingtonians

by Erica Clark

Students from over ten Transylvania University organizations participated in giving back to Lexington through community service on the national Make a Difference Day last Saturday.

Created in 1992 by USA Weekend magazine, this annual volunteer event for various nonprofit organizations takes place each October. Transylvania was one of many communities around the country that participated.

Junior Annie Jones, a work-study student for AmeriCorps representative Becky Cochran, was put in charge of organizing the occasion for Transy students who wished to be involved.

“I sent out an e-mail to all the organizations on campus and the ones who wanted to participate let me know,” Jones said. “We also set up a booth and coaxed people to sign up, … but in a good way.”

Available projects and organizations for volunteering included the Catholic Action Center, the International Book Project, Lexington Explorium, Habitat for Humanity, SeedLeaf, Rails to Trails and many more.

Junior Justin Penticuff organized a group who showed interest in Habitat for Humanity service opportunities to participate in Saturday’s events.

“We were able to provide a good deal of man power for Habitat’s ongoing project of recycling old and unused paint to be remixed, filtered and packaged for sale back to the community,” Penticuff said. “The initiative keeps toxic neglected paint from landfills and just makes sense from a sustainability standpoint.”

Make a Difference Day served as a launching pad for the Habitat for Humanity campus organization, which Penticuff said will be coming into creation soon.
Transy extended its participation in Make a Difference Day to Sunday when the sisters of Alpha Omicron Pi held Mr. Transyman to raise money for their philanthropy.

Junior Amelia Reesor worked to put on this “man pageant.”

“It was great to have a fun and unique event to participate in on Make a Difference Day,” said Reesor. “I think everyone enjoyed watching the guys show off, and it was even better to know that all the profits were going to help kids with arthritis.”

These were two of the many ways students assisted the nation in its efforts of giving back. By partaking in Make a Difference Day, Transy students hoped to just lend a helping hand.

“The slogan for Make A Difference Day is ‘A national day of doing good.’ I would like to think that Transy was nurturing that philosophy through the community by participating,” said Jones. “We are making an impact by being proactive and not just sitting around. It’s that proverbial one step closer.”

Organizing the event was a time-consuming task.

“I thought it was going to be a huge challenge, but I told myself that I just needed to suck it up and do it,” Jones said. “It’s a great ministry, and look now, it was a great success. … At least I don’t have to deal with all of the paperwork afterward.”

For more information about this annual event, contact Annie Jones at aejones12@transy.edu.


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