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FIT students make global impact through partnership with Stop Hunger Now organization

Each year, students in the Freshmen in Transition program, a residential living-learning community in the Oklahoma State University College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, participate in a philanthropy event. The 2015-2016 class of FIT students sought out to make a global impact, and a partnership with the Stop Hunger Now organization made this vision a reality for more than 70 students.

Each year, students in the Freshmen in Transition program, a residential living-learning community in the Oklahoma State University College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, participate in a philanthropy event. The 2015-2016 class of FIT students sought out to make a global impact, and a partnership with the Stop Hunger Now organization made this vision a reality for more than 70 students.

Since last fall, students in FIT have conducted seven creative fundraisers to reach their fundraising goal for the Stop Hunger Now organization. Their efforts totaled more than $3,300, and they also had the opportunity to package 11,110 nutrient-rich meals in conclusion to their philanthropic efforts.

Jeff Jones, Stop Hunger Now program manager for the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, said Stop Hunger Now is driven by the vision of a world without hunger. He said in order to reach this goal, they rely on organizations such as FIT.

“These FIT students have the opportunity to be part of the solution,” Jones said. “This food is going straight from their hands into the hands of undernourished people across the globe.”

According to Jones, the meals that were packaged not only provide food, but also promote education, encourage children to attend school, improve children’s nutrition and increase economic growth.

Katie Smithson, CASNR student success coordinator and FIT director, said the FIT participants wanted to partner with this organization because they want to help end hunger.

“This group of students is so competitive,” Smithson said. “Seeing the hard work they put into helping Stop Hunger Now this year was thrilling. The opportunity to actually package the meals was a rewarding experience for the students.”

For Justin Rucker, animal science major from Clovis, New Mexico, the meal packaging event was a fun way to spend time working together with his peers while helping combat a global issue.

Rucker’s volunteer role was to package and tape the boxes for shipping.

“Most of us had never heard of Stop Hunger Now before this year, but now, I think more of us will do our part to help the organization in the future,” Rucker said. “Being able to help people and give back just means the absolute world to me.”

Since its founding in 1998, Stop Hunger Now has provided more than 225 million meals in 73 countries. To learn more about the organization, visit www.stophungernow.org.

The OSU College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources believes in the value of hands-on education and the importance of having a well-rounded student experience. Our award-winning faculty members are dedicated to developing students and passionate about adding value to the total educational experience. With 16 majors and 62 study options, plus more than 60 student organizations, the college is committed to expanding minds and inspiring purpose. Learn more at casnr.okstate.edu.

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REPORTER:
Jacy Bradford

MEDIA CONTACT:
Melissa Mourer
Communications Coordinator
Agricultural Communications Services
144 Agriculture North
Oklahoma State University
Stillwater, OK 74078
Phone: 405-744-3737
Fax: 405-744-5739
Email: melissa.mourer@okstate.edu

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