By Therese Porod
On Valentine’s Day the Stewardship Development Office and Student Senate hosted Bank Day. Students stopped by Kindlon from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. to empty their Benny the Bank or donate change to help benefit the Benedictine community.
The money is donated to several areas of BenU including Benedictine Fund, general scholarships, academic area, athletics, the Father Kevin Textbook Program, or another option of the donor’s choice.
The Stewardship Development Office hosted the Bank Day event along with the teamwork and efforts of Student Senate, in order to have more student involvement.
“Students are critical to the Benny program, which strives to educate students about donor contributions to the campus and help everyone at the University, students, as well as faculty and staff members, understand that you don’t have to make a big donation to make a difference or show support for what you care about on campus,” explained Heather Forster-Jensen, coordinator for stewardship at Benedictine University.
The Benny the Bank program started last year, but this is the first year that monthly events for this program will be hosted. Thus far, Benny the Bank has raised $343.99 for various areas of the University. Bank Days have had an average of 30 to 40 people who visited and contributed in 2012.
“I think Benny the Bank is a fantastic program here at school,” enthused freshman Joe Ward. “We need to have students give back to the University because in the long run it helps us out so much more.”
“If the government sees the students are giving back to the school, it will allow Benedictine to receive a significant amount of grants and funding for scholarships and student activities,” added Ward.
The Stewardship Development Office schedules Bank Days every month, usually around a holiday or major event. Past themes have included Halloween, Thanksgiving and study-breaks.
In honor of Valentine’s Day, “Benny-tines” will be given away at Bank Day. In exchange for donating change, participants will receive a Valentine treat and a card with candy to give to someone else.
“Benny the Bank is a great way for students to be able to give back by giving a small donation,” BenU student Kaitlin Walsh said.
Student involvement was an essential part of the Bank Day event. “It’s a good way of giving back,” said Stephanie Analytis, member of Student Senate.
“This is an awesome way to help give back to Benedictine and get more students involved on campus,” said freshman Mailani Burton. “It’s a good opportunity to allow the students to control where the money they donate is going. Especially on Valentine’s Day, more people will share their love for Benedictine.”
Although Bank Days are held monthly, students, faculty and staff members are encouraged to donate their change to Benny the Banks located in Coal Ben, Kindlon, the Kindlon Coffee Shop and the library.