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Hey Conference USA! It's Brandi from Tulsa SAAC. I hope everyone is off to a fabulous 2011. TU SAAC's focus this year has been branching out to the community. We have been involved with many different community service projects, but particularly enjoy volunteering with children. Two of TU SAAC members are now going to tell you more about it!
Arielle Tillou, a SAAC representative for the Women's Rowing team: On Saturday, December 4th, 2010, The University of Tulsa student-athletes joined together to volunteer for Shop with a Cop. Student-athletes from different teams were present. Shop with a Cop is a program held in many cities across the US which provides needy children with a unique experience to shop for Christmas gifts for their families with a member of the police department. The Rotary Club of Tulsa has partnered with the Tulsa Police Department and Celia Clinton Elementary school for several years in this program. A member of the Rotary Club helps the student create a list of items they would like to buy for members of their family and then the student goes shopping in the store with a police officer. The Rotary Club member also secretively finds out what the child would like for Christmas and makes sure they get a special gift as well. While shopping with the cop, the students learn that they are trustworthy, dependable, helpful people and this builds a great bond between the child and the police officer. After, the student-athletes help the children wrap their gifts and it gives them a chance to bond with the elementary students. This was a very eye-opening experience for many of the student-athletes and something many will continue to do for years to come.
Sam Masters, TU SAAC President and SAAC representative for the Men's Track and Cross Country team: Tulsa SAAC is going out to eat! No, we might not be fine dining, but it definitely is a boisterous occasion. One of our many events that TU SAAC is participating in is Lunch Buddies at Kendall Whittier, a local elementary school. During the Wednesdays that we would normally have the afternoon off due to TU SAAC only meeting every other week, we spend our lunch conversing, laughing, and meeting young minds. The kids at lunch buddies range from kindergarten to 2nd grade.
We do everything from patrol the overall rambunctious behavior of young children to having fun (and often enlightening!) conversations with them. So much as teaching a student how to spell "turtle" has been done. When she was asked why she wanted to know, she brightly responded, "Because I like to know everything." Going to Kendall Whittier has not only been greeted positively from staff of the elementary school, but is a great way for the student-athlete to remember where we all started. Community service is an important aspect of being a student athlete and we make an effort to reach the parts of the community that can be positively influenced the most: children. It was such a fun occasion that we are looking forward to going back every other Wednesday for the remainder of the year. We encourage all student-athletes throughout C-USA to go out and get involved! These are the times of our lives that kids of all ages really look up to us. We can really make a difference in their lives and giving them insight on the importance of being a good student.
I hope you enjoyed our February edition of the C-USA blog!
Hello C-USA fans, this is Ryan Holland reporting from the University of Memphis. After a great fall of serving the community, the SAAC here on campus is looking forward to another eventful semester. As we get back into the day-to-day grind of school and athletics, we feel that it is necessary to take the extra step and help out around the community. We have a great semester planned which was started off by volunteering at the Civil Rights Museum for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. We are also planning to continue our tradition of Read to Succeed, where we will visit an area elementary school four times each month to read, interact, and invest our time into local children's lives. Another way we are planning to interact with the community and the student body as a whole is through our NCAA alcohol awareness grant. We have entitled the grant "True Blue Choices," and have plans for promotions at all sporting events throughout the spring semester. We hope to represent Memphis and Conference-USA throughout the spring, and we wish all other schools a great semester!
This year Southern Miss SAAC is participating in some new and exciting things. In order to enhance the SAAC program and promote more unity and cooperation between the athletes, the CHAMPS Cup program is changing. Instead of each athletic team being its own group, each SAAC representative and an athlete of the opposite sex will be in charge of a group consisting of ten athletes selected by random. The team will be a mixture of all the different athletic teams at Southern Miss. This will bring more variety, excitement, and cooperation to the athletes at Southern Miss. The group who shows the most school and community spirit by attending school events, athletic events, and community service project at the end of the year will be the CHAMPS Cup winner! The athletes are excited and anxious to see who their CHAMPS Cup teammates will be. The groups should be determined by the end of the month.
Another opportunity presented itself to the Southern Miss SAAC: Homecoming. Since homecoming is center around the school and athletic, SAAC decided to get more involved in the school traditions of homecoming. SAAC will make their own float and showcase it in the downtown parade. Athletes will also help in repainting and decorating downtown buildings in order to make the perfect atmosphere for the parade. All this is new and exciting; however, the best part will be participating in a school tradition that only Greek Life has participated in. Southern Miss SAAC will be making a lawn decoration for homecoming that will be placed in front of the Southern Miss Athletic Center for all to see!
The last big project going on at Southern Miss is the always anticipated canned food drive. Last year, Southern Miss SAAC collected the most amount of canned food out of CUSA. This year they hope to stay on top but collect more than they have ever had before. The theme this year is "CAN you Support your Troops?" This event will take place November 17th-23rd with the November 22nd being Military Appreciation Day at the Southern Miss football game. Southern Miss SAAC is ready to make this year one of the best ever, and they are their way with new and exciting events!
Hello Conference USA this is Tyson Gale writing from Huntington, West Virginia. All of us here at Marshall are settling in for another big year for our University. We have just barely begun our school year and are looking forward to having our first SAAC committee meeting in the next week or two. We have a huge event coming up on campus this weekend with the annual Friends of Coal Bowl football game against West Virginia University. The football rivalry is set for kickoff at 7pm Friday September 10, on ESPN. During the game Marshall will be honoring of its' own in 3-time Super Bowl Champion Troy Brown of the New England Patriots. Brown was recently inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame and will be receiving a campus wide salute during the game. To coincide with the game, our SAAC group has teamed up with the American Red Cross and had a blood drive on September 8, 2010. Marshall student-athletes were in charge of checking the donors in and handing out food and beverages to the donors. It was a great way for our athletes to get involved in the community and for members of our community to get to know their favorite colleges' athletes. That's it from Marshall University and all of us here would like to wish the best to all other member institutions. Thanks.