Southeast Missouri State University
For more information, contact:
Ann K. Hayes (573) 651-2552
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

INDIVIDUALS, ORGANIZATIONS BENEFIT FROM GREEK WEEK 2002

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., April 19, 2002 - A number of charitable organizations and individuals in need in this region are benefiting as the result of the highly successful Greek Week 2002 held April 6-13 at Southeast Missouri State University.

Greek Week is held each year in the spring at Southeast to celebrate membership in the Greek community. Greek Week consists of eight days of community service, social interaction and friendly competition.

Members of Southeast's fraternities and sororities volunteered at the Special Olympics, collected food and money to be donated to community organizations and individuals, assisted with the Family Fun Fair held at Arena Park and conducted a blood drive to assist in the ongoing need to save lives. Together, members of Southeast's fraternities and sororities donated more than 2,000 hours of community service during the week.

"Campus and community involvement is a vital part of the Greek experience at Southeast," said Gretchen Weber, assistant director of the University Center at Southeast. "It enables our students to learn valuable skills and practice what will hopefully be lifelong involved citizenship."

"Greek Week gives students the opportunity to give back to the community," Weber said. "The Southeast Greek community proves year after year that giving is more fun than receiving. The results of Greek Week are a sign of our Greek students' enthusiasm and their true understanding of philanthropy. They truly understand the positive impact they can have on the community."

The Greek Week Blood Drive, held March 10-13, produced 557 pints of blood for the American Red Cross, with over 700 people through the door, a new record for the campus community.

As a result of "Greek God and Goddess" fund raising, $24,852 was split between donations to the United Way, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and the Cape Girardeau Police Department. Each Greek chapter is responsible for raising money through fund-raising activities or by accepting donations. The Greek Week Steering Committee votes each year on which organizations to donate the funds.

"Our students appreciate the good work done each year by the United Way and their willingness to partner with the University, chapters and individuals on philanthropy and service projects," Weber said. "Because of our long-term partnership, students recognize the impact that the United Way has on our community and are pleased to help achieve their goals."

The Make-A-Wish Foundation was a new recipient this year, and the Greek students were able to donate $5,400 to both the Springfield, Mo., chapter, covering the Southeast Missouri region, and the Metro St. Louis chapter.

"The majority of Southeast students come from all over Missouri and Southern Illinois, and because we ask family and friends to contribute to our goal, we felt it was important to make an impact in as many communities as possible," said Mark Haaser, graduate assistant for Greek Life and Student Involvement. "Make-A-Wish was a great organization to work with, having volunteers and Wish recipients from both chapters present at the All-Greek Chapter meeting to receive the donations and to share how the funds make a difference.

The final donation in the amount of $4,000 was made to the Cape Girardeau Police Department to be used toward the purchase of a new dog for the canine unit. The Greek Week Steering Committee learned of the need after a chapter advisor brought it to the attention of her organization.

"When we learned that we raised $4,000 more than last year, it was a natural move for the students to look for another way to benefit the Cape Girardeau community," Weber said.

The police department uses the canine unit to educate area youth on responsible citizenship and to reinforce success skills, ideals that are inherent to the Greek system. Erin Hensley, Alpha Xi Delta and Greek Week co-chair, said, "The donation is a way great way to address an immediate and unexpected need in the community and to say thank you for working with us."

In addition to the blood units and funds, more than 14,000 cans of food were donated to the Salvation Army as part of the week.

"It was exciting to see how grateful the staff at the Salvation Army was for our donation," said Nick Wierciak, one of the Steering Committee members who helped unload the U-Haul full of food.

Greek Week also is the time of year when the Greek community and the University recognizes outstanding chapter and individual achievements. A number of awards and honors were presented to Greek students at the All Greek Chapter meeting. Tom Foley of St. Louis of Sigma Phi Epsilon was named Greek Man of the Year, and Lindsay Piel of St. Louis of Delta Delta Delta was named Greek Woman of the Year, both for their leadership and service to the Greek system and the University over the past four years. The Advisor of the Year Award went to Kim Pulley of Alpha Xi Delta for her dedication to chapter and individual development that include restructuring chapter finances and increased alumni relations.

The women of Delta Delta Delta sorority won the Chapter Community Service Award. Delta Delta Delta completed 3,397 hours of community service and donated more than $5,760 to charitable organizations. The men of Lambda Chi Alpha also received this award, completing 1,677 hours of community service. The Individual Community Service Award recipient was Katie Roberts of St. Louis of Alpha Delta Pi sorority, who taught swim lessons and water safety programs at Matthews Dickey Boys and Girls Club.

Academic excellence among Southeast Greek students also was highlighted during Greek Week, with 371 Greek students recognized for achieving a grade point average greater than 3.5 during the past year, and 122 for achieving a perfect 4.0 during that period.

"Members of Southeast fraternities and sororities consistently receive the highest grade point averages among all Greek organizations at universities in the Ohio Valley Conference," Weber said. Dr. Ginny Moore, Southeast professor of accounting, finance and business law, was awarded the Professor of the Year Award for her outstanding teaching practices, dedication toward students, and her advisement of Women in Public Life, a student organization that encourages women to become involved in politics. The women of Alpha Delta Pi nominated Moore for the award.

For more information regarding Greek Week 2002, contact the University Center at Southeast Missouri State University at (573) 651-2280 and ask for either Mark Haaser, graduate assistant, or Gretchen Weber, assistant director.

 

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