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Big Event gives back to Ruston community

April 17, 2014

 

LACY CAMP
Staff Reporter

 

With an opening message from the mayor of Ruston, Dan Hollingsworth, the Big Event, organized by SGA was officially underway Saturday morning.

 

“I should thank you (the students) for participating in the Big Event because willingly volunteering services to others is one of the key stones of living a good life,” Hollingsworth said.

 

Louisiana Tech President Les Guice, Senator Rick Gallot and Vice President for Student Affairs Jim King were guest speakers.

 

“The No. 1 role of universities is to serve,” Guice said. “We serve the citizens, our state, our communities and the nation.”

 

At least 50 organizations and 1,300 volunteers filled Joe Aillet Stadium to serve around 100 homes, said Carlton Gray, a senior sustainable supply chain management major who organized the Big Event.

 

“As a former student as Louisiana Tech, I rarely saw 8:30 or 9 o’clock in the morning, particularly on Saturdays,” Guice said.

 

Although most of the volunteers were Tech students, Gallot and his family also participated in the Big Event.

 

“I have never seen a group come together like this to go out and provide service to the community,” Senator Gallot said.

 

However, gathering volunteers who are willing to wake up early is not the only challenge the SGA must face, planning the event and getting participants are two other main challenges.

 

“You normally start prepping for this in the winter quarter,” Gray said. “Normally what we do is look at the list from the previous year and call all the people who participated last year, then after that we put ads in the Ruston Daily Leader, and then the homeowners mail the ads back to us.”

 

As part of the Big Event, volunteers scattered out in teams across Ruston providing services such as cleaning windows, raking leaves and throwing sticks into a pile.

 

“I serve on UCM, which is United Campus Ministries, as their secretary and this year all the campus ministries wanted to come together and serve the Big Event as one whole group,” Catherine Champ, a senior business management major, said. “This is the first year the ministries have come together, so it is a really cool opportunity to serve as one body of Christ.”

 

As volunteers became leaders throughout Ruston through community service, King ended his speech to the volunteers by reminding that every student is a leader.

 

“You guys are the leaders of this campus,” King said. “You are the leaders of this community. Model the way for one another. Model the way for the community. You are leaders here and you are leaders tomorrow.”

 

Email comments to lmc074@latech.edu.

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