Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Terry MBA - A Commitment to Service

Betsy Curry, MBA '14
Students at the University of Georgia have the incredible opportunity to serve the Athens community during their time in the MBA program. All MBA students are required to donate 45 hours of their time over the two-year program, and as the Volunteer Dawgs Coordinator, it is my job to make sure students have many options to choose from.

This year started strong with our annual Candemonium event.  During Candemonium, which is in November, the MBA classes compete against one another to see who can get the most non-perishable food items donated and then use them to build a unique structure right in front of Brooks Hall. This year was our most successful collection yet! The Candemonium trophy went to the first years who had a more diverse mix of food products, but the second year’s undoubtedly made a more memorable structure as they managed to re-construct Brooks Hall itself out of canned goods. In total, the MBA students proudly donated 4,165 pounds of food to the Northeast Georgia Food Bank.  The Terry MBA students are proud that our efforts will provide 3,500 meals to Athens residents.

Another favorite event of the Volunteer Dawgs is working with Habitat for Humanity. This year we teamed up with this outstanding non-profit to build a ramp for an Athens family that has a special needs child.  Students also worked with Extra Special People, a non-profit organization that strives to boost the self-esteem of developmentally challenged adults and children by offering a night for them to show off their individual talents. Relay for Life was another fun night where students participated in a six-hour event to raise money and awareness for cancer research, benefiting the American Cancer Society.  The last notable volunteer work took place with the Athens Land Trust.  Students worked as business consultants to help residents of a low-income neighborhood develop business plans so that their products could be sold at a new farmer’s market that opened in May.

Using our outstanding accumulated business knowledge to help our community is the most effective and impactful way to spend our service hours, which is why next year I will work closely with each club to find semester-long or year-long projects that benefit local non-profits in the Athens area. Marketing students can be so helpful to a non-profit just getting off the ground, the Healthcare Club has so much to contribute to a local clinic, and no one is better than the Entrepreneurship Club members at developing and implementing business plans. We will put our business skills to work for the Athens community, and look forward to another year of service!