UNK Phone-a-thon

Renee Ballenger

The Kearney Area Chamber of Commerce supported the NU Foundation and UNK’s Admissions Department at their annual Phone-athon in which prospective students whose applications have been accepted are called with Congratulations and Welcome greetings from the community of Kearney. Over the course of two days last month, nearly 20 volunteers from the Chamber community and UNK spent a collective eight hours on the phone making more than 500 calls to admitted prospective students. Dusty Newton, Director of Undergraduate Admissions, says, “We have enjoyed this outstanding support from Chamber members volunteering their time to connect admitted UNK students to the Kearney community through this phone-a-thon over the last eight years. This is a positive example of the community’s passion for UNK!”

Steve Linden,an associate broker at Coldwell Banker Town & Country Realty, has been volunteering at the Phone-a-Thon for six years. “It is a small way for me to give back to the community. We all benefit when more students come to UNK.” Linden, a native of the Kearney area, currently has a daughter attending UNK. “I have always believed that at UNK you get a great education. It is a small campus where students are not just a number; professors know the students in and out of the classroom. Linden believes the Phone-a-Thon program is essential in sharing the story of UNK. “Students as well as their parents are pleasantly surprised to hear from people other than recruiters asking them to come to school here. They usually have questions about the schools as well as the community and this is a great way for them to feel comfortable with both.” Linden encourages others to volunteer, particularly for the Phone-a-Thon, which can take up only a couple of hours one evening, once a year. He concludes, “You can make a difference on whether a student comes to UNK or drives down the road to the next school.”
Shana Thomas, Program Director of the Kearney Area Chamber of Commerce, adds, “Thank you to everyone who participated in the calling this year for the 8th Annual University Relations – UNK Phone-a-thon. A special thank you to committee members, community members and the Young Professional Network group for taking time out of their evenings to call. We received great feedback from both parents and students on welcoming them to Kearney. UNK is vital to this community! Kearney and UNK go the extra mile to make students and parents welcome, and it is appreciated!”