Gannon’s Invitation to Volunteer Everywhere, more commonly known as GIVE Day, will take place Saturday as the entire Knight community will participate in a tradition that has become a hallmark of the university’s image.
Over 1,000 students, faculty and staff from both the Erie and Ruskin campuses will venture out into their local communities and spend the day participating in small projects such as cleaning up the West Bayfront or Presque Isle, or lending a hand at low-income senior living facilities.
Members of the Gannon community will gather in the Hammermill Center at 8 a.m. Saturday to receive free refreshments, as well as their complimentary Gannon GIVE Day T-shirts.
Volunteers will then break into their organizations and sit in assigned seating in the Hammermill. Following brief talks on the importance and value of community service, those in attendance will leave to begin their group’s assigned project, which will last from 9 a.m. to noon.
An example of an organization’s assigned project would be the Alpha Sigma Tau (AST) sorority, which will be volunteering to clean apartments for senior citizens.
Nikki Johnson, vice president of growth for AST, said that a project like this is key to growth within her sorority; she also feels GIVE Day is the perfect way to give back to Erie.
“Every year, our chapter is always excited to be a part of GIVE Day,” Johnson said.
“We’ve all made Erie our home for at least four years and were always ready to give back to the community. GIVE Day is just the perfect chance to do that.” To many in the Gannon family, GIVE Day is one of the highlights of the academic year — a chance for the entire community to come together and make a difference in the community.
Mike McGhen, a junior psychology major, said while he’s not sure how he’ll be participating in GIVE Day, he’s nonetheless excited for it, and thinks it serves the mission of Gannon well.
“I’m not sure how I’ll be involved with GIVE Day, but I definitely want to go out and do something,” McGhen said. “GIVE Day is unique and special to Gannon, and I think that’s why so many people, or say the community at-large gravitates toward it. It’s a uniting event.”
Anthony DiFonzo, a sophomore criminal justice major, loves the caring and community aspect of GIVE Day.
“It’s really great,” DiFonzo said. “We see people from all different campus groups and organizations band together to do some good and I think that’s honestly the best part of it.”
Claudia Herrero, a public service and global affairs major, said GIVE Day is all about giving something of yourself back to your community and seeing cooperation between school and community.
“It’s always valuable to give back to your community, and to hold service in high regard,” Herrero said. “I love to see the intertwining of Gannon with the local community.”
If your club or organization has not registered yet, instructions can be found on engageu.edu.