MTSU students discover volunteer options at fair [...

MTSU students discover volunteer options at fair [+VIDEO]

MTSU recently conducted its annual Volunteer Fair for students who were looking for opportunities to help make a difference in the community.

Representatives came off-campus from Rutherford County Schools, Alive Hospice, Department of Veterans Affairs and Special Kids, to name a few.

On campus, vendors attending the annual event included Health Promotion, Experiential Learning and the MTSU Stormwater Program, among others.

Kimberly Edwards learns about Alive Hospice at Volunteer Fair.

Kimberly Edwards, right, a junior psychology major, listens as Cindy Kloss, center, and Margot Fray discuss volunteer opportunities at Alive Hospice Sept. 5 in the Student Union Commons. (MTSU photo by Kimi Conro)

More than 20 companies and departments participated in the four-hour event under one large tent in the Student Union Commons, seeking volunteer help from new and returning MTSU students.

The fair lets registered nonprofits — Greenhouse Ministries, Voluntary Service, His Healing Hands and others — recruit students to allow them to become plugged in to community service and volunteer opportunities in order to make a difference.

Mercedes Woody, 21, a senior biology major from Memphis, Tennessee, listed MTSU Health Promotion, Alive Hospice, His Healing Hands, Garden Patch Thrift Shop and Special Kids as nonprofits she is considering … in addition to her involvement in student organizations such as the NAACP, Phi Alpha Delta law fraternity and Student Government Association.

“It’s really good,” Woody said of the Sept. 5 Volunteer Fair opportunities. “There are a lot of group volunteer options for a lot of organizations I’m in. I can get a lot of people out (to support them).”

Melanie Gravage tells Sarah-Kate Blackburn and Courtney Edde about Nourish Food Bank.

Melanie Gravage, left, talks about volunteer opportunities at Nourish Food Bank with MTSU students Sarah-Kate Blackburn, center, and Courtney Edde, both of whom are freshmen in the School of Nursing. The exchange took place Sept. 5 at the MTSU Volunteer Fair in the Student Union Commons. (MTSU photo by Kimi Conro)

School of Nursing freshmen roommates Courtney Edde, 18, of Lewisburg, Tennessee, and Sarah-Kate Blackburn of Cornersville, Tennessee, also checked out various nonprofits.

“I really like hospice,” Blackburn said after visiting with representatives from Avalon Hospice in Murfreesboro. The pair also spoke with Nourish Food Bank representatives.

The Volunteer Fair is a Connection Point activity, helping students find involvement with companies and organizations outside of their academic pursuits.

— Randy Weiler (

MTSU freshman elementary education major Alyssa Chaney learns about Center for the Arts volunteer opportunities.

Alyssa Chaney, left, an MTSU freshman elementary education major, talks with Lydia McLaurin, center, special projects coordinator, and office manager Anna Hall about volunteer opportunities at The Center for the Arts in Murfreesboro. The exchange occurred Sept. 5 at the MTSU Volunteer Fair in the Student Union Commons. (MTSU photo by Kimi Conro)