Students thank community in Big Event
Published: Friday, April 27, 2012
Updated: Thursday, April 26, 2012 14:04
Over 700 students joined together Tuesday to give back to the Fargo-Moorhead community by taking part in the 2,000 hours of service that made up the Big Event.
Luke Brodeur teamed up with Trista Manikowske as co-director of this year’s event. Brodeur says the event played an important role in giving back to a generous community.
“The overall idea of the project is that it’s one big thank you to the Fargo-Moorhead community,” Brodeur said. “I think a lot of the time, at NDSU, we either live in our own bubble or we ask a lot of the community. We kind of get them to donate money or support the students.”
Students participated in a variety of activities, from volunteering in individual homes to non-profit organizations. The planning community believed reaching out to individual homes was the best way to show appreciation to area citizens.
“That was a good place to start, but with the number of volunteers we got, we eventually had to begin reaching out to non-profit organizations and different kind of service places,” Brodeur said. “Really anywhere where students can make an impact, whether it be an organization or in a home.”
Many students got involved with their on-campus organizations such as sororities and clubs. Others did it for more personal reasons. According to Katie Worral, a sophomore on the recruiting committee, it could have been a way to fill yet another need.
“I think people are wanting to sandbag. They’re missing sandbagging, so they want to volunteer,” Worral said. “But it’s an awesome experience. It’s really great to give back to the community and be involved on campus.”
Reasons for individuals who did not participate may vary, too. According to Tom Jaszczak, a sophomore studying industrial engineering says time constraints held him back.
“It just didn’t fit into my schedule,” Jaszczak said. However, as for others, he says there is another cause. “It will boil down to laziness as a whole. I think people don’t want to get off their behinds and do anything. It comes down to laziness, and people don’t like to be tied down to things – at least I don’t.”
Jaszczak also says that he would be able to plan ahead and would like to get involved in future events. He said the event provides an opportunity for students who don’t know how to get plugged in or involved and can be used as an effective networking tool.
The idea originated from Texas A&M with a similar event that began 30 years ago and has evolved into the largest service event -- on a single day -- organized by students in the country. NDSU has teamed up with the Volunteer Network, student government and Alumni Association to bring the project to North Dakota for the third year.
“This is huge growth for us this year. We almost doubled the volunteers signed up this last year,” Brodeur said. “[We] hope it becomes a culture -- everyone knows about the Big Event and wants to be a part of it.”