GREENVILLE, Pa.—Thiel College’s second annual community service project for first-year students collected and distributed two-plus tons of non-perishable food items for food pantries at the Good Shepherd and the Salvation Army, school officials announced Thursday.
The 4,500 pounds of items exceeds both last year’s total and this year’s goal. Food drive organizers were targeting 4,400 pounds of items to match one pound per child in Mercer County who was identified as struggling with food insecurity, according to Feeding America, a national non-profit hunger-relief organization. In its first year, the project collected 3,000 pounds of food for the Good Shepherd Food Pantry in Greenville.
“We set one pound of food per child both as an easily identifiable goal, but also to emphasize how real an issue this is for our region. While we are proud of the hard work of our first-year students and the generosity of the households in our region, thinking about all the effort that went into generating one pound of food per child puts the issue into very real terms for our students and the region,” said Associate Academic Dean for Student Success Greg Q. Butcher, Ph.D., who oversees the First-Year Experience. “This project is designed as a way to put Thiel students in touch with the real world and create a connection between Thiel and the community.
This year, about 2,000 pounds were donated to the Salvation Army on Aug. 29 and the remaining 2,500 pounds were sorted and delivered to the Good Shepherd Food Pantry and the Salvation Army in Greenville on Sept. 4.
The first-year students dropped off donation bags at homes throughout the Greenville community on Aug. 25 with a list of suggested non-perishable items for collection. Students returned to those homes to collect the filled bags on Aug. 27.
The First-Year Experience program ensures student success through a thoughtful and deliberate series of activities, events, academic advising, orientation and a first-year seminar class. While engaging in a series of activities, students explore the college experience where studies, interactions, and residential and social experiences come together to challenge how they think and to communicate differently and collaboratively as a member of a diverse community.
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