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Ole Miss Big Event Gives Students Opportunity to Volunteer in Community

Ole Miss BIG Event, Facebook
Ole Miss BIG Event, Facebook

Saturday, April 2, Ole Miss students will be giving back to the Oxford community with the Ole Miss Big Event, a community service event. The guest speaker will be former Rebel, D.T. Shackelford.

The Big Event will start off its opening ceremony in Ole Miss’ new Pavilion. The Pavilion opened its doors for the first time in January 2016, and has quickly become an iconic part of Ole Miss’ Campus.

“Once we found out that we could book the Pavilion for the 2016 Big Event opening ceremony, we knew it was going to be quite the experience for volunteers,” said Maggie McDaniel, Co-Director of the Public Relations and Marketing Team. “We have come up with creative ways for the atmosphere to be both exciting and entertaining. We hope that will get our volunteers pumped and ready to give back.”

The volunteers will not only experience the grandness of the Pavilion at the opening ceremony, but will also hear a former member of the Land Shark defense speak at the Big Event.

Ole Miss BIG Event, Facebook
Ole Miss BIG Event, Facebook

Deterrian Shackelford, also known as D.T. and the first ever two-time recipient of the Chucky Mullins Courage Award, will be sure to get the Rebels going early Saturday morning as the guest speaker. DT was known for his involvement in the Oxford community while in college at Ole Miss.

A Ole Miss junior, Amy Rosenthal said, “We had D.T. come speak at CRU last semester. He was so great, and has such an outgoing personality and great perspective.”

The Big Event is an Ole Miss tradition that can students look forward to every year, as it is an annual community service event.

Ole Miss BIG Event, Facebook
Ole Miss BIG Event, Facebook

A Ole Miss senior, Elizabeth Russell, said, “Big Event is one of my favorite parts of the spring! It’s such a great opportunity to give back to the community that gives us so much. I’m from out of state, so it’s cool for me to be able to say thank you to Oxford like this! It’s also just a fun way to spend your Saturday morning with your friends.”

Last year over 3,000 students sacrificed sleep on a Saturday morning in order to volunteer at the Big Event. This year, the Big Event staff hopes to see even more students.

Director of media relations, Kelly Savage, said, “We are so excited for Big Event 2016, and the continued impact our service will have with the residents of the Oxford-Lafayette-University communities. Our volunteers will be building gardens, laying pine straw, picking up litter, cleaning homes, and a whole host of other types of projects that will hopefully be meaningful to the individuals we have the privilege of interacting with. Big Event is a ‘thank you’ to the community that welcomes Ole Miss and her students so graciously, and we are looking forward to being the largest day of community service in the state of Mississippi once again.”

Students participating in Big Event are asked to arrive at the Pavilion at 8 a.m. on Saturday, April 2. The volunteers will be greeted with a t-shirt, breakfast and music to kick off the event.

Kristin Banks is an intern for hottytoddy.com from the Meek School of Journalism and New Media. She can be reached at knbanks@go.olemiss.edu.

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