The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


Igniting spark after MOVE

Volunteer group reorganizes

SMU students have a new opportunity to get involved on campusand in the community: Students Promoting Awareness, Responsibilityand Citizenship.

Formerly known as Mobilization of Volunteer Efforts, or MOVE,SPARC was revamped this semester because it wasn’t servingthe needs of the campus.

“We had MOVE, but there was no leadership in theorganization or any officers,” Carol Clyde, the director ofLeadership and Community Involvement said. “There’s aneed for community service organizations, but [we didn’tthink] MOVE was doing the best it could do.”

Clyde and the Office of Leadership and Community Involvementdecided to reorganize MOVE and created a “think-tank”weekend. Students applied to go on a weekend retreat to decide whatthey wanted the organization to be, and SPARC is what emerged.

“The students wanted an organization that not only dealtwith community service but also social consciousness andcitizenship,” Clyde said.

Michael Annen, a sophomore philosophy and political sciencemajor who was part of the weekend, said that all the students therefelt there was a need to have a premier organization on campus thatmeant something to the student body and community.

“I believe that our purpose is that we really want to makecommunity involvement special and grand on campus,” Annensaid. “The fundamental SPARC mission is to promote programsthat foster civic participation and communityinvolvement.”

Clyde and Annen said that on the retreat they realized that justdoing community service wouldn’t solve problems such aspoverty. It just works on the surface. SPARC believes that bypromoting awareness and citizenship, they can get students involvedin society. Annen said SPARC wants students to understand themeaning behind doing a community project.

“We want students aware of the social issues theseprojects deal with,” Annen said. “A lot of studentsdon’t understand the missions behind these projects. We wantthem to give time to their community and make a change.”

SPARC was organized into offices with committees over the”think-tank” weekend as well. There is a president, sixprogram coordinators and five directors. Each of these offices willalso have a committee responsible for service programs andvolunteer recruitment.

Clyde said she has seen an increase in community serviceprojects since SPARC changed from MOVE.

“Our community service day was about five times the sizeit was last year,” Clyde said. “We have a more diversegroup interested, and it’s our hope that it will be muchbroader. That it will be something a lot more people will getinvolved in.”

Today is the last day SPARC is taking applications for officers.Applications can be picked up and dropped off at the Office ofLeadership and Community Involvement on the third floor ofHughes-Trigg.

Students can also get general information about communityservice activities by registering through SPARC. Students will beput on an e-mail list that updates them about different projectsavailable to participate in. The group is also in the process ofmaking a Web site that would include all the community serviceprojects online.

“Agencies get in touch with us, telling us theirneeds,” Clyde said. “Part of our goal now is to find away to get the information from them right out tostudents.”

SPARC believes it is different from other organizations oncampus.

“We want to unite the entire student body, faculty andstaff,” Clyde said. “Whether greek or non-greek, acommuter or not, we just want people to come together to docommunity service and give back to those in need.”

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