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Big Event activities will attract Mississippi College students to reach out to people in need across metro Jackson.
Coinciding with the USA’s Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, the Big Event for MC volunteers is set for January 16.
At last year’s Big Event, MC students showed up in big numbers to offer assistance at the Ronald McDonald House. It’s the Jackson residence for families with loved ones who are patients at the Blair E. Batson Children’s Hospital at the University of Mississippi Medical Center.
With classes cancelled, waves of MC students shouldered volunteer assignments at the We Will Go Ministries in Jackson, and at the Methodist Children’s Home. The Second Harvest benevolence program was another stop and so were the Boys and Girls clubs.
The spirit of volunteerism will be alive for MC students the same day that millions of Americans reflect on the contributions of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr.
Mississippi College’s Student Government Association leaders are working with the Office of Christian Development staff to organize the activities. MC students are expected to volunteer between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. that Monday.
The Big Event began at Texas A&M University in 1982. Last year, there were 22,500 Texas A&M students helping people in the College Station and Bryan communities in the Lone Star State.
Dates for Big Event activities off campus differ nationwide. Texas A&M’s date is set for March 25. Towson University in Maryland scheduled its Big Event for April 22, the same date the nation celebrates Earth Day.
Planning on the Clinton campus stepped up on January 9 as spring semester classes began. MC students John Williams of Neely, Mississippi and Daniel Schwertz of New Orleans signed up volunteers at the campus cafeteria. Leaflets taped to nearby building doors spread the message.
It’s just a case of Williams saying he feels a great deal of satisfaction helping people in need.
Similar Big Event days are planned by students at the University of Oklahoma, Florida State University, the University of Nebraska, and Virginia Tech, to name a few of the schools. Virginia Tech’s activities signed up 9,200 students.
About 130 Mississippi College students will sign up for The Big Event in 2017, Williams predicts.
Volunteer service remains part of the fabric of life at the190-year-old  Baptist-affiliated university. MC faculty, staff and students typically perform more than 100,000 hours of community service hours each year. The community service outpouring spreads to more than 150 agencies in metro Jackson.
The work at Stewpot brings Mississippi College students to serve meals to the poor in downtown Jackson. Students on the Clinton campus offer reading and homework assistance to Clinton children at the Hunter Oaks apartment complex. Students and staff at the MC School of Law assist with the building of Habitat homes for low-income families every year.
For more information on The Big Event, go to www.mc.edu/sga/big-event/ contact John Williams at jmwilliams1@mc.edu or Beth Masters of the Christian Development Office at 601-925-7366.

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Patrice is married to Greg Boykin and they have two sons, Bradley & Alex Boykin. Patrice is a lifetime resident of Simpson County. Patrice retired after 25 years in the Insurance industry where 23 of those years were with State Farm Insurance in Magee. She is very active in the community and has served in several leadership roles. Patrice has been a Secretary for the Magee Touchdown Club for 19 years and President of the MS Scholars of Simpson County. Patrice was a member of the Magee Adopt A School Program. She was elected to a term on the Simpson County School Board. She has served on the Board of Directors for the Magee Chamber of Commerce. She serves on the Keep Magee Beautiful Committee and is a member of the Advisory Committee for the Simpson County Technical Center. Patrice is a member of the Simpson County Republican Executive Committee. Multiple times, Patrice was named Parent of the Year for Magee Schools as well as District Parent of the Year for the Simpson County School District. Patrice & her family are members of New Hope Baptist Church.

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