Pre-Professional Society raises money for local charity

Maddie Davis, Co-News Editor

Wilkes University’s Pre-Professional Society of the College of Science and Engineering promotes the professional development and collaboration of its students and the community. One of the ways the club promotes professionalism and collaboration is through their yearly fundraising for local nonprofit organizations.

During this past academic year, the students of the Pre-Professional Society raised $500 for the Catherine McAuley Center of Scranton. The amount raised was one of the highest amounts the club has donated to a nonprofit.

On May 15, the club presented Jenny Blanchard, the Development and Volunteer Coordinator of the Catherine McAuley Center, with a giant check for $500.

The Catherine McAuley Center is a local nonprofit shelter that provides housing and services primarily for homeless women and children within the Lackawanna and Luzerne County area. The center provides care for those who are stricken with a crisis and who are in need of temporary housing.

The McAuley Center aides in education, counseling, life skills, access to health care, employment, and training opportunities, Blanchard said.

“This generous monetary donation will support the general operations of the Catherine McAuley House, including physical maintenance and upkeep, as well as household supplies, case management and gifts for the children,” she explained.

Morgan Nokavich, senior biology major and president of the club; Zoya Rahman, senior biology major and the Vice President of the Pre-Professional Society; and Ana Rahman, senior biology major and vice president, all volunteered previously at the McAuley Center as apart of an event called the ‘United Way of Caring.’ After volunteering there, the club knew this Center was worthy of a fundraiser.

“We had such a good experience with the people at the center that when our club wanted to do a fundraiser, we immediately knew we wanted the proceeds to benefit the Catherine McAuley Center,” said Ana Rahman.

“I remember thinking how great it was that the Catherine McAuley Center was providing a safe environment for this family who might not have had any other place to go if not for the Center,” recalled Zoya Rahman about the reason she wanted to donate funds to the Center.

To raise the funds, the members of PPS-CSE and advisor Connie Dombroski, created a fundraising event on campus, “A Taste of Pakistan,” as well as several other events. As apart of the fundraiser, the club members sold authentic Karachi street foods, chai tea, and gave Henna tattoos to students, faculty, and staff.

“I enjoyed this particular fundraiser because we were able to interact with so many people and make them aware of this amazing nonprofit organization that does so much for families in need,” recalled Ana Rahman.

“We put a lot of work into that event and it really came together in the end to be a great success and also a lot of fun,” Nokavich said.

The profits raised from “A Taste of Pakistan” and several of their other fundraisers meant much more to the club members than just the amount that was written on the check for the McAuley Center.

“The most rewarding part of donating the money was knowing that it was going toward such a great cause,” Nokavich said. “Having volunteered at the center and meeting the people there made it even more meaningful and I know that it will be put towards a great cause.”

It was more important to the club to help build a connection and a community to the center, something Dombroski, strives to teach the students in the Pre-Professional Society for their future careers.

“The club thinks that it is very important for our students to make connections and form bonds with individuals and organizations so they can absorb as much information as possible,” sshe said.

Club members recognized the importance of their fundraising and community efforts in relation to their future career in the health services.

“Fundraising the money and building these relationships are not only helping out my local community but it’s also instilling in me the values that I hope to have as a future doctor,” said Zoya Rahman.

“As someone who aspires to be a doctor practicing medicine in underserved communities, building relationships with nonprofits, like the Catherine McAuley Center, is very important to me,” said Ana Rahman. “The rewarding experiences I have had and hopefully will continue to have with these nonprofit organizations will only strengthen my desire to help the underserved population.”