IUP’s philanthropy pales

Whether it’s the Student Government Association’s concerns over voting, the failure to get a student representative on the Indiana Borough Council, the turnouts at sporting games or the issues surrounding student participation in drinking holidays that have the potential of upsetting Indiana residents, many organizations across Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s campus seem to be worrying about student participation.

If one were to consider the successes of other universities in garnering support for philanthropy events, it seems that IUP still has a long way to go in that aspect of student life as well.

Penn State University’s THON event was held over the weekend, ending Sunday. By the time the notorious dance was over, the Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Dance Marathon had raised its record high of $13.3 million.

Though this event is considered the largest student-run philanthropy event in the world and was started 42 years ago, it still seems that IUP students could take some tips from their fellow Pennsylvania neighbors, granted the school’s total enrollment is almost six and a half times that of IUP.

Other philanthropy events held throughout the country – at smaller universities than Penn State – raise incredibly high numbers as well, like the 20,000-enrolled Georgia Southern University’s “A Day for Southern” event that raised more than $2.1 million in the fall.

Last year, IUP’s Relay for Life raised about $20,200 according to its Facebook page. In October, IUP’s Hawk Rock, an event modeled after Penn State’s THON, raised $5,500, despite a $10,000 goal.

These organizations consider the money raised to be large successes, but the university as a whole doesn’t have to settle for failures to come together cohesively as a community.

If the students want change for a better community, if the campus administrators want change, and if the borough wants things to change, then it will have to start with coming together for a common goal.

Let’s take up a cause and, large monetary donations or not, try to support something greater than just ourselves.