Students purchase more than $300 in groceries for local food pantries

If you happened to shopping for groceries at a local store yesterday, you might have gotten in line behind a group of shoppers with six carts, and who were trying to calculate their expenses with a calculator–but they were actually working for a great cause, not just holding up the line!

[More, after these photos]

photo of WIU Management students with food donation

photo of Management class delivering food

On Tuesday, Nov. 2, nine WIU freshmen and their instructors shopped together at a grocery store in Macomb, filling carts with more than $300 worth of groceries including canned vegetables, peanut butter and other staples.

But it wasn’t to stock up their own residence hall rooms for the winter months.

Beginning in late October, students in four sections of Management 125Y, Business and Technology in a Global Society–a class offered through Western’s First Year Experience (FYE) program–sold 50/50 raffle tickets to benefit local food pantries. These nine students (above) volunteered to take the proceeds to the store and purchase groceries for disadvantaged families in the area. And as the holiday season approaches, this project was in addition to the Black Student Association’s ongoing Thanksgiving Basket Project, in conjunction with the annual Cans Across America Drive.

Instructors Jeri Harper, Becky Mahr and Cathy Onion came up with the idea for the raffle project.

“Considering the current economic climate, the students involved are receptive to the idea of giving back to the community they live in,” Mahr said. “Since a majority of today’s businesses stress social responsibility, this project prepares students to volunteer and assume an active role in making a difference.”

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WIU alumna enjoys new ‘roll’: power-packing player for the Peoria Push

WIU alumna Lisa Kerr recently described herself as having been a “band nerd” in high school–and one of those kids who wanted to stay “under the radar” in the (often cruel) high school social hierarchy.

But when she got to college, she gained more confidence. Today, Kerr, now 32, has no problem showing off. According to a recent story from the Galesburg Register-Mail, Kerr is one of a number of professional women who’ve found a passion for strutting their stuff on skates.

Kerr, who graduated from WIU with a bachelor’s degree in business in 1999, now lives in Peoria (Ill.) and works for Marquette Group as a team leader. She also owns her own business on the side. And now that she’s a derby girl with the Peoria Push League, she’s got a philosophy for having fun and being the person she wants to be:

“…skate hard, give some hits, take some hits and have fun with other women looking for the same thing.”

To find out more of Kerr’s story, read reporter Tom Leowy’s full Register-Mail article here. If you liked learning about Western’s alumna skating to success, click ‘share,’ on Facebook or Twitter (below), or follow us by subscribing (click the orange icon at the top of the page, or sign-up for an e-mail notification)!

screen shot of Lisa Kerr

Screen shot of Register-Mail story

Screen shot of Register-Mail story