Ali Titus
UNK Student Government Director of Community Relations

University of Nebraska at Kearney students will give back to the Kearney community during the sixth annual Big Event on Saturday, April 2.

The Big Event, which is sponsored by UNK Student Government, is one day each year when hundreds of UNK students, faculty and staff volunteer to do community service projects throughout the Kearney community as a thank you for their continued support.

“Kearney and UNK are closely connected with one another, and The Big Event is a great way for UNK students to show their appreciation for everything that the community does for the university,” said Ali Titus of Aurora, UNK Student Government director of community relations.

“The Big Event has other benefits as well, such as bonding with fellow students in the community you may not have otherwise known, the satisfaction of knowing that you did something good and making a contribution to the community we all reside in,” Titus said.

The event, themed “One Big Day. One Big Thanks.” will begin at 9 a.m. at UNK Foster Field.

“We will have donuts and juice to start the day off, and we will have our annual kick-off celebration,” Titus said. “From there, the groups will disperse out into the community to complete the projects.”

“Last year, we had about 430 students participate in the Big Event,” Titus said. “We are hoping for similar numbers, if not more, this year.”

In the past, volunteers have painted signs at Fort Kearny, raked leaves and branches for the elderly, picked up litter along Highway 10, walked dogs for the Humane Society, played with children at the Kearney Area Children’s Museum, restocked shelves at the local library and cleaned up the area around the State Fireman’s Museum.

Each participant will receive a free t-shirt and lunch provided by UNK Student Government.

The Big Event, which originated at Texas A&M University in 1982, was started at UNK in 2006. It is now an annual event at more than 70 universities across the United States.