UMR fraternities and sororities raised more than $42,000 for charitable causes and contributed nearly 15,000 hours of community service during the 2003-2004 academic year.
Those numbers are from a study by Danielle Miller of St. Peters, Mo., a UMR mechanical engineering student and a member of Zeta Tau Alpha sorority, who compiled the information for a presentation she made recently to the UMR Student Council. She surveyed UMR’s 23 fraternities and sororities, and based on responses from 19 of the organizations determined that the Greek organizations raised a total of $42,151.07 for charitable causes during the past year.
Many of those funds went to local organizations, such as the Phelps County Chapter of Habitat for Humanity, GRACE and the Russell House, a shelter for abused women and children. Other funds were raised for national charitable causes, such as Girl Scouts or the Children’s Miracle Network.
In addition, UMR’s fraternities and sororities contributed 14,870.5 hours of community service work. The work includes tutoring in the local schools, assisting with Habitat for Humanity projects, coordinating blood drives, cleanup projects and other service projects.
"I really wasn’t surprised that there were such high numbers," says Miller, who presented the data to Student Council on behalf of UMR’s Interfraternity Council and Panhellenic Council. "UMR’s fraternity and sorority members do a lot for the community."
Matt Goodwin, coordinator of Greek life at UMR, agrees. "A lot of people realize that the Greek community has a significant impact on local charities and non-profit organizations, but Danielle’s project backs up those assertions with solid data."
Miller also points out that Greek students account for 23.4 percent of UMR’s undergraduate population, but hold one-third of the leadership positions in campus organizations.