Come May many college students’ thoughts turn to final exams and heading home for the summer. At some colleges there is also the question of what to do with any leftover money on college cards for things like meals, toiletries and snacks.
For students at Stonehill College, the choice was easy for many. Donate the money to buy non-perishable food for the Easton Food Pantry.
That translated into more than $1,300 worth of donations, according to Lucas Sartori, a freshman who was one of the organizers of the drive.
“(The Freshman Class Committee) found out many students have leftover funds at the end of the year and buy things in bulk for themselves,” Sartori said. “We had the idea to buy bulk for someone else.”
Typically students are given an order form to order things like bottles of water, snacks, or whatever else they might want to take home with them with the extra money on their Hill Card.
“We created a special form for donating to the food pantry,” Sartori said. “They checked off the boxes of what items they wanted to donate, swiped their card and the money was withdrawn from their account.”
While the collection was last minute and not advertised well, just through some flyers and two school wide emails, Sartori said he was pleased with the turnout.
“It was pretty successful,” Sartori said. “We didn’t think we’d get the amount of things we did. Next year we’ll definitely plan around it.”
He said it is always good to give back to the community and the people in it even if you do not know them.
“It’s always a good thing to help each other out without receiving something in return,” Sartori said.
For those working at the food pantry the cases of food were a welcome surprise, according to food pantry coordinator Ken Wood.
“We didn’t know they were going to do it and we didn’t have to sort it because we knew it was all new,” Wood said.
He said with two to three new families signing up each week and an average of 80 families being helped on a weekly basis, half of them large families, the donations would last nearly a month.
“They went by our list of most needed items,” Wood said. “We got all items on the list so that’s a big plus for us. It seems like we just buy stuff and it goes quickly.”
Stonehill encourages students to share the gifts they have in a socially responsible way according to Communications and Media Relations Director Martin McGovern.
“I’m really proud of them,” McGovern said. “It’s a very lovely idea. It’s a very touching end of school year story.”