NEWARK, Ohio, Dec. 13, 2016 — Students at The Ohio State University at Newark and Central Ohio Technical College (COTC) are making the season bright for three children in Licking County. Ohio State Newark and COTC's student government organization, with assistance from the Society of Engineering Technology (SET) student organization, used money raised this semester to purchase gifts for the Families Helping Families program administered by Licking County Job and Family Services (LCJFS).
"I have been a part of student government for the past three years, and we have been a part of Families helping Families for at least that long," said Elizabeth Beattey, student government president and health sciences major at Ohio State. "Christmas is my favorite holiday for many reasons, one being the fact that it is the giving season. It personally gives me great joy just knowing that these three girls and their families will have a great holiday season."
Student government began participating in Families Helping Families six years ago. This year, along with SET, they were able to sponsor three girls using money raised at Fall Fest, an event coordinated by multiple student organizations in which the community was invited to participate in family activities for a small fee. SET contributed all their fundraising dollars —which amounted to nearly $150 — from a bake sale and participation in Fall Fest as well. Combined, the organizations were able to fulfill the girls' wish lists of rollers skates and toys in addition to clothes, pajamas and winter coats.
For SET President John Gordon, a father and engineering technology student at COTC, the struggles faced by families seeking presents for their children is something he has experienced firsthand. "This school and our community have been there for me," he said. "Not many get the opportunities COTC has given me to use my position to touch the lives of three children in Licking County. SET is dedicated to helping our local community in any way possible. I only wish that I could see the looks on their faces when they wake up Christmas morning."
According to a press release from LCJFS, Families Helping Families started nearly four decades ago and now serves more than 600 Licking County children. LCJFS collects purchased items from donors and distributes them to families in December.
Photo caption: Members of student government stand with the gifts they purchased for three local children (left to right): Erin Hederick, Steven Foley, McGlynn Cauchon, Elizabeth Beattey, Hunter Spittler, Johnathan Kent
Central Ohio Technical College and The Ohio State University at Newark have forged an outstanding array of educational opportunities for the central Ohio region and beyond. This partnership is viewed as a model for higher education in the state of Ohio. At Central Ohio Technical College, students gain hands-on, applicable experience to begin working in the field, or to transfer those credits toward a bachelor's degree program. The Ohio State University at Newark offers an academic environment that's challenging but supportive with world-renowned professors and access to Ohio State's more than 200 majors.