400 participate in Wilkes’ third annual Big Event

Junior%2C+Jenna+Vislosky+%28left%29+Senior%2C+Jacklyn+Palummo+%28middle%29+and+Senior%2C+Hayley+Dutka+enjoy+the+%22Big+Event%27s%22+backyard+barbecue.

Alec Wizar

Junior, Jenna Vislosky (left) Senior, Jacklyn Palummo (middle) and Senior, Hayley Dutka enjoy the “Big Event’s” backyard barbecue.

Alec Wizar, Correspondent

The Big Event, which takes place on Wilkes University’s campus, is a single day of university-wide community service.

Students, faculty, staff, and alumni of Wilkes University joined together Saturday, April 26, to cater to the needs of the local community.

The university’s collective mission is to work together to unite, give back, and foster growth among Wilkes Colonels and their neighbors. They hope to help those who are in need of assistance in the community.

Check in for the Big Event started in the Henry Student Center  on the campus at 8:30 am. The volunteers were then split up into separate groups and sent to different sites to work.

The volunteers’ raked yards, painted fences, groomed gardens, packed boxes of food and much more. The event staff worked with local agencies to find volunteer sites.

With close to 400 students registered to participate in this year’s event, it is the biggest Big Event to date.

Volunteers were sent to 32 different locations that this year, and a majority of them were concentrated in the downtown area.

Some of the locations included the Salvation Army, Volunteers of America and the CEO Food Bank.

“We have a tremendous outpouring of support from the city and the mayor’s office, so we’ve been extremely lucky to have all of them on board,” Megan Boone Valkenburg, Student Development coordinator, said.

The event concluded with a barbecue at 1 pm. This barbecue provided volunteers with hot dogs, hamburgers and live music.

“I’m very honored to have led the Army of Colonels in all of these community service projects, and I’m so happy to be a part of this growing and continuing Wilkes tradition,” Kassandra Bugg, the Big Event’s student coordinator, said.