Pioneer Community Day to take place Saturday

USG hosts day of community service for ninth straight year

Written By Jordyn Hronec, Co-News Editor

One United Student Government (USG) committee has been working tirelessly throughout the semester to plan and execute an annual event.

The event is called Pioneer Community Day, and it is scheduled to take place on Saturday, April 6 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

“Pioneer Community Day is Point Park’s day of community service that USG puts on every year,” Senator Kooper Sheeley, co-chair of the committee, said. “It partners with Point Park to help make Pittsburgh a better community to live in, and it’s all driven by students and put on by students with support from the administration.”

On the day of the event, students have the opportunity to work with a variety of charitable organizations. There will also be an after party in Village Park that all volunteers can attend.

“This year, we are partnering with the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, the Delta Foundation, Wood Street Commons and possibly the Humane Society,” Sheeley said. “With Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, we’re doing what we usually do, which is going around, cleaning public fixtures, picking up cigarette butts, cleaning graffiti; just doing simple tasks that would make the community cleaner, and would just make it an overall better-looking place to live.”

According to Sheeley, the efforts taking place at the Wood Street Commons are in partnership with a new club on campus, Point Park Cares.

“They’re going to do a little bit of club outreach and help the people who live there just interact with people who live right next door to them,” Sheeley said. “They’re going to do a little bit of karaoke and serve them lunch and have fun.”

Senator Mary Shelly, co-chair of the committee with Sheeley, has been heading the efforts in partnering with the Delta Foundation for community service opportunities.

“The Delta foundation is in charge of planning and putting on Pride,” Shelly said. “Recently, they put on the Kesha concert here that a lot of students volunteered for, we’re just going to help them organize and clean, because they have a lot of preparation coming up soon for Pride.”

According to Sheeley, another club, Campus Cursive, is also a partner in the event.

“Campus Cursive is holding an event the day of, and they’re writing letters to the community and just saying ‘thank you’ to all of the people who are volunteering and all of the people who are allowing us to volunteer,” Sheeley said.

Campus Cursive will be stationed in Lawrence 200 from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m., according to Shelly.

“This way, anybody who is walking by and couldn’t give the whole day or just didn’t know about it can write a letter,” Shelly said. “Or for people who are disabled, there is still a chance for them to give back, even though they can’t get out there.”

According to Sheeley, this year marks the ninth annual Pioneer Community Day. One of the challenges that the committee has had to face is ensuring that things this year go smoother than last. Last year in particular, only 13 students participated in Pioneer Community Day despite a high number of sign-ups.

The committee has engaged in advertising the event on social media, conducting sign-ups at tables around campus and “dorm storming”, which is the practice of going to every dorm and sliding hot cards under the door.

Sheeley said that there are currently 53 students signed up for Pioneer Community Day, which is the highest number seen in the past three years. Sheeley said that the school administration and USG advisors have been helpful in the planning process.

“Dean Paylo and Dean Gieseke have been the biggest aids, and Rachel Phillips has put so much into this event and dealt with so many tears being shed in her office,” Sheeley said. “I have cried over this event more than I care to admit. I just want it to be good, the administration has been the backbone that has allowed us to do this.”

According to Senator Brighid Shanahan, being on the Pioneer Community Day committee has been rewarding.

“Pioneer Community Day is a reason I applied to be a senator,” Shanahan said. “Having the support of Kooper and Mary has been good, you just need someone to support you and help you. They’ve really taught me what a USG senator should be like.”

Students can sign up for Pioneer Community Day by clicking on the link that is displayed on all advertisements for the event. Students can also sign up for the event the day of in Village Park, starting at 9 a.m.