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Let's Talk Business: Leading Through Service

A Chambers College education isn't just about making a profit: it's about giving back to the community.

In West Virginia, one in nine adults face hunger, while the same statistic for children is even higher at one in seven.

Considering this information, the Chambers College’s MBA program service group felt that we would have the greatest impact on our community by assisting Pantry Plus More in their mission to supply families in need with basic daily necessities and school supplies.

In this blog post, I will give some advice on how you can create your own effective service organization. I will also share my own thoughts on how participating in local service can contribute to your personal and professional growth.

Photo of the MBA Service Committee at Pantry Plus More

Finding Your Organization

To start, I suggest taking a temperature check of your potential teammates. With graduate school being quite demanding at times, it was important to determine my classmates’ availability and service-related interests. I did not want to make a commitment to an organization that we would have trouble supporting due to our schedules.

The results from our survey found that people were most enthusiastic to assist those with food insecurity. This led to us contacting Pantry Plus More.

Supporting The Organization

Pantry Plus More (PPM) is a very active organization that distributes donations of food, clothing and other materials on a bimonthly basis. Due to this high level of activity, my team and I have been able to understand PPM’s process and procedures through repetition, making us more effective volunteers.

The administrators of PPM have expressed their gratitude many times because they know they can rely on us to perform tasks with little guidance due to our knowledge of their methods. This January, we decided to bring their mission closer to home by holding a drive for non-perishable goods and cleaning products in Reynolds Hall.

Delegating Tasks

My classmates in the MBA program come from diverse backgrounds and possess unique skill sets which we’ve utilized to support our mission.

I wanted to design our service project in a way that would allow everyone to lend their strengths, like designing a flyer for our food drive or simply donating some canned goods. Every contribution, no matter how small, has an impact on our neighbors’ lives. I have been impressed with my colleagues’ commitment to this worthy cause.

Making an Impact

During our time assisting PPM, we've made connections with like-minded individuals both in the WVU system and in the greater community. We were also able to see firsthand the need for an organization like PPM in our community. Being able to visualize this need was critical in motivating my colleagues to support our efforts.

Our food drive may have been small compared to the efforts of large charity organizations, but I believe that every canned good and article of clothing has improved someone’s day. So far we have assisted over 600 families, volunteered more than 40 hours and donated 25 pounds of supplies. We look forward to continuing our support of Pantry Plus More and the greater Morgantown community.

Zach Meredith
MBA candidate, MBA Service Committee member

"Let's Talk Business" is a series of guest blogs written by members of the Chambers College community. All views expressed in this post are the author's own.

Interested in contributing to Let’s Talk Business? Get in touch here.

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