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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The Battalion May 4, 2024

The Biggest Event

 
 

Despite the scattered showers, cold weather and looming clouds that threatened hundreds of outdoor projects, thousands of volunteers huddled in groups early Saturday morning for the 31st annual Big Event the biggest to date.
Sophomore Morgan Ransleben, recruitment executive for The Big Event, said the rain did little to deter the executive team and more than 17,500 volunteers from giving back to the community.
“We started off our morning with a complete downpour, but our faith and committee held strong and we pulled it together,” Ransleben said.
As the newly elected 2013 Aggie yell leaders led a yell to BTHO the cold at the introductory ceremony their first time leading students in yells since their election it became apparent to some volunteers that this years Big Event was about more than yard work or painting it was about celebrating community service.
Chrisleigh Jones, assistant director of The Big Event, said the staff tries every year to improve on their goal of saying thank you to the community by helping out members of the Bryan-College Station area with projects such as leaf-raking, painting, and gardening. Jones said this years staff tried to boost morale among students with live music, free food from various vendors, and motivational speakers such as Kevin Sumlin.
Justin Cardenas, director of The Big Event, said improvements this year also included the addition of more tools and 200 more tasks to be completed. Cardenas said the largest ever student-run service organization at A&M is recompense for the job the community has done in putting up with the student body.
Its a chance for students to say thank you, Cardenas said. We busy the streets, we are kind of loud, and its our way of saying thank you for putting up with us all year.
Volunteering groups came from many areas of campus Greek life, religious organizations, athletics, dorm life and the Corps of Cadets. Participation in The Big Event has become a tradition for some students.
Quinn McCall, junior mathematics major, said every able freshman should participate in The Big Event or risk being a two-percenter. McCall said the overall attitude of Big Event volunteers that he has worked with make tedious tasks seem fun.
When I came here my first year, everyone was really motivated, and I realized how important this is, McCall said. You might be doing stuff that seems minor to you, but it could mean the world to the person you are helping.
Janice Haverland, a College Station resident, was helped Saturday by a group of students from Walton Hall who spread mulch, created flowerbeds and raked 27 garbage bags of leaves at her house.
Haverland said she was initially uncertain about asking for help but, after a recent back surgery, she could no longer keep up with yard work.
It really surprised me, Haverland said. I was expecting two or four students, then all of these kids showed up and really worked their tails off.
Haverford said she was grateful, not only for the work that students had done, but for their upbeat, willing attitudes.

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