Washburn students volunteer in a BIG way

Summer Workman / Washburn Review

Washburn students take volunteering to the next level on April 14 at WSGA’s new annual volunteer project, the BIG Event.

Three hundred students have registered to spend several hours of their Saturday to help at more than 20 sites including YMCA, American Red Cross, Topeka Zoo and many others.

Shelbie Konkel, a sophomore history and political science double major, got the idea for the BIG Event after she and fellow students visited a student government conference at Texas A&M. The event is a joint cooperation with the Bonner Leadership Program.

“Our hope is to make this a long-term, annual event and for WSGA to include other on-campus departments and organizations,” said Konkel.

One particular project will include students cleaning and painting a school gym white so that students can paint their handprints on it. Another project will also help youth at The Villages, a group home.

Konkel acknowledged that the projects couldn’t be carried out without sponsors’ support.

“We really couldn’t be doing this without the help of sponsors like Lowe’s, Target, Planet Sub and Frito Lay,” said Konkel.

Students  are optimistic their efforts will be beneficial.

“I think I will have a positive impact, and that I will be helping a lot people,” said Abbie Boyda, a sophomore radiology major.

Boyda, is a member of Delta Gamma, will volunteer with members of the sorority at a food packing plant.

Konkel added that sororities and fraternities volunteering would also receive extra points for Greek Week. In addition, some organizations will participate because volunteer hours are a requirement for receiving funding from WSGA.

“In the past, there wasn’t much opportunity. It’s great for students to have a chance for volunteering and when you give Washburn students a chance to help, they usually don’t turn it down,” said Konkel.

Registration for the event is closed, but if students are still interested in volunteering, they should email [email protected] in order to do so.