Financial aid office hosting food drive

Jalynn Collay, Contributing Writer

Eastern’s financial aid office is hosting its annual food drive in order to help those in need.

The office will be accepting donations of non-perishable items from now on until Dec. 19, or when students leave for the break on Dec. 14.

There is a designated area to drop off donations in the financial aid office on the first floor of the Student Services Building.

The financial aid department has been cooperating with Standing Stone Community Center for years now, and the community center will also collect this year’s donation.

On campus, the financial aid office has taken the initiative to give a helping hand in the past years through different ways.

The office adopted a family for the holidays one year through various connections to allow the family in need access to a better holiday.

Jennifer Hedges, financial aid adviser manager in the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships, said putting our selfish needs to the side goes a long way and can make a difference whether big or small.

“There is something everyone can do to help,” Hedges said.

The office at first used to do gift exchanges around this time, but felt that it was more important and appropriate to give back instead.

The financial aid office being in charge of an event like this could be surprising because of the perception about the term financial aid.

Hedges said some students have a bad perception of the office.

”They think we are mean,” Hedges said.

She said initiatives like this one could potentially change this perception.

“We like to give back,“ Hedges said.

Diane Pepperdine, a staff clerk in the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships, said projects like this are not new to the office.

“The financial aid department has always done something,” Pepperdine said.

The financial aid office stepped back from activities like the food drive for years but recently made more changes.

Implementing new and innovative ideas, the department has made efforts to continue their work for others.

Now it is an annual role for the department. Pepperdine said this is something that the office can do which helps them feel a sense of fulfillment.

“It was rewarding to give back,” she said.

Jalynn Collay can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]