Mercer University honored the student body for receiving United Way of Central Georgia's top volunteering award. A banner now hangs in the Connell Student Center from a railing of the second floor lobby.
The award they won is the Lt. Randy Parker Memorial Volunteer of the Year, which is named for the Macon-Bibb County firefighter who heroically gave his life in the line of duty in February 2015. Parker was actively involved in United Way of Central Georgia among many other community organizations.
The students pictured above are student leaders from MerServe, which drives volunteer initiatives. (From left to right: William Leonard, Regina Liu, Margaret Rooyakkers, Brandon Jern, Kalon Hightower, Hoor Qureshi, Addie Dillard, and Kaelen Scott.
In regard to serving the United Way of Central Georgia (UWCG), about 200 students tutored children to improve their reading skills as part of UWCG's Read2Succeed program.
UWCG President/CEO George McCanless said: “Few communities could begin to afford to pay for the volunteer service provided by this year’s honoree, the Mercer University Student Body.”
Dr. Mary Alice Morgan, senior vice provost for service learning at Mercer, said by participating in the tutoring program for Bibb County students: "(O)ur students gain an education about the challenges facing children in low-income neighborhoods and a greater sense of civic responsibility.”