United Way chapter to start on Miami’s campus
Published: Thursday, November 17, 2011
Updated: Thursday, November 17, 2011 21:11
A student-led United Way organization is working closely with Oxford United Way to create a larger impact.
The organization sprung from the Living Learning Community titled "government relations network" from Stanton Hall, according to Jerome Conoly, president of Oxford United Way and assistant dean of Miami University libraries.
While the Oxford United Way has a fundraising goal of $226,000 for this year, Conoly said the group is more interested in students' time and talent than their money.
"Our students are giving time that is priceless," Conoly said.
Sophomore Stephen Hostelley is the coordinator of the 12-person group comprised of two first-years, nine sophomores and one senior.
Miami students only contribute 5 percent of local United Way funds, yet they live on campus for nine months of the year, according to Hostelley.
"We want to boost support from students to be more involved in the community we take part in every day," Hostelley said.
Conoley said the board of directors embraces student support.
"We are excited about what students are doing and how they are contributing," he said.
Sophomore Ryan Karbula serves as the chair of the finance committee for the group. He thinks Miami students could do a lot more to support he Oxford United Way.
"I feel that our support could be far more substantial than it has been," Karbula said. "I know they appreciate all the support we do offer but I think they realize it could be much greater."
Karbula said the goal of the group is to increase the support of the Miami community for the Oxford United Way.
"I think it is a very worthwhile project," he said.
In addition to encouraging hands-on involvement in the 22 local United Way agencies such as the food pantry and the family resource center, the group is also planning a big fundraising event for March, according to Hostelley.
"We are teaming up with the theater department to raise funds for the local United Way," Hostelley said.
Conoly is impressed by the student group's progress thus far with planning the event.
"The theme of the United Way is ‘live united'," he said. "A group of freshmen coming together to try their best to make the life of another person better today than it was yesterday, it's hard not to support that."