By Sierra Smith-Swickard
A new student club at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College has a three-part strategy: have fun, raise awareness about spirituality and make a difference.
The Good Samaritans, in its first year as a student club at SMWC, recently held a fun, team-building exercise and is gearing up for a Toys for Tots drive in November.
Students competed in a scavenger hunt on Oct. 3, planned by club member Kirstin O’Rourke, a freshman. O’Rourke also raised donations from campus offices for prizes for those competing. Prizes included SMWC-related items such as coffee mugs, tote bags and items promoting the Pomeroy Pride campaign, raising funds for the future sports and recreation center at SMWC. Amazon and TJ Maxx gift certificates were also prizes.
Malia Mohan, staff adviser to the club and coordinator of SMWC’s Campus Ministry, said the goal of the scavenger hunt was to raise awareness about the new club. The club, Mohan said, is not “all about spirituality and service. It’s to have fun, too.”
That goal led O’Rourke to her idea of the scavenger hunt. “We can’t do activities without students. So, this was a good way to get them involved,” O’Rourke said.
During the scavenger hunt, the contestants were each given a different starting point and told to follow the clues until they returned to the original clue. Freshmen Caitlin Kowalski and Ashley Hinkle partnered for the competition.
Kowalski said she was participating in the hunt because “it seemed like a lot of fun.”
Freshman Hannah Endress used the event to relieve stress and navigate campus. She said she was excited for “learning where everything is because I get lost a lot. I even got lost coming here (Sullivan Parlor).”
The Good Samaritan’s next activity is a Toys for Tots drive, partnering with the Clay County campaign. Donations – including new or unused toys as well as funds to buy toys – will be accepted at SMWC from Nov. 6-20.
To donate toys, look for boxes in buildings around campus. To donate cash or check, contact Mohan at 812-535-5244 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Freshman Jennifer Bridgewater will sell bracelets for $1, with the funds going toward the Toys for Tots fundraiser.
Good Samaritans is open to all students of SMWC. For more information, or to join, contact Mohan.