Social responsibility is taken eXtremely seriously at WIU. It’s one of the University’s four core values (academic excellence, educational opportunity, personal growth, and social responsibility), and throughout each academic year, many students and student organizations put innumerable hours into planning, publicizing, and implementing an array of events that raise funds for good causes.
From Big Pink Volleyball (also known at BPV, a breast cancer fundraiser held every fall semester at Western) and eXtreme Dodgeball for Diabetes held in the spring (both held at the WIU Campus Recreation Donald S. Spencer Student Recreation Center) to such fundraisers as St. Baldrick’s and Haunted Higgins 19 (planned through students and staff working in University Housing and Dining Services) and community service and philanthropy via the University’s Greek organizations (in Fall 2011, 28 Greek organizations performed 3,530 hours of community service and contributed nearly $18,875 in chapter philanthropy), the events generate thousands of dollars and provide students with fun ways to contribute to many causes that go way “beyond the bell tower.”
At last month’s 9th annual Dodgeball for Diabetes, 45 students participated, resulting in some awesome photos on the Western Illinois University Rec Events Facebook page.
According to Amber Bedee, who is studying in Western’s College Student Personnel program and serves as a graduate assistant at Campus Recreation, this year’s event raised $295 for the Illinois Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
“This foundation conducts research surrounding three facets of diabetes, including a cure, treatment, and prevention. Finding a cure for type 1 diabetes is the highest priority. In addition to funding research, the funds donated will also go toward education,” Bedee noted. “For this year’s event, Campus Recreation collaborated with the National Residence Hall Honorary (NRHH). Campus Recreation coordinated the marketing and t-shirt design, as well as sign-up and logistics of the event. NRHH was key to promoting the event in the residence halls and coordinated prizes for the top two teams. This year they sponsored purchasing t-shirts for the winning team.”
The events also enable students to hone their professional skills.
“Helping to organize this year’s Dodgeball for Diabetes enabled me to work on my skills in regard to planning and implementing a program of this size,” Bedee said.