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UAlbany Circle K Students Focused on Community

UAlbany Circle K students pitch in building a house for Habitat for Humanity

Students of the University at Albany's EM>Circle K club pitch in building a house for Habitat for Humanity in Albany.

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ALBANY, N.Y. (January 03, 2011) -- Whether it's making hundreds of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for the Capital City Rescue Mission, fundraising in support of the American Heart Association, or hosting a United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) Halloween Party, the students of the Circle K club at UAlbany are focused on giving back to the community.

"We're the collegiate version of Key Club," said Circle K Club President Sara Ganetis, a senior at UAlbany majoring in Atmospheric Sciences. "In fact, many of our members are former 'Key Clubbers.' We offer opportunities for students who are dedicated to becoming responsible citizens and leaders in the local and global community."

Circle K students stock an apartment full of food ready to deliver for the holidays

Circle K students at UAlbany stocked an apartment full of nonperishable items for food pantries and shelters during the holidays.

Students involved in Circle K must pledge to foster compassion and goodwill toward others through service and leadership. At UAlbany, the pledge means volunteering at the Northeast Regional Food Bank, taking part in annual charitable walks throughout the area, or any number of other opportunities to make a difference.  Many Circle K students at UAlbany end up in leadership positions at the state or international levels.

Ganetis also touts the ability of Circle K members to bring out the best in their neighbors – whether it is other UAlbany students or the greater community. In December, the organization held a food drive to collect non-perishable items for the Capital City Rescue Mission. "We encouraged our members to bring items to meetings, went dorm storming, and spent one day at an area Price Chopper. We anticipated collecting around 100 items at most, but thanks to the dedication of our members and folks at Price Chopper, we collected about 950 items – enough to fill 36 boxes and require four cars to deliver downtown."

Next semester, Circle K plans to host a charity ball to benefit the UNICEF Eliminate Project – a program aimed at ending maternal neonatal tetanus. Other plans include serving meals at the Capital City Rescue Mission and working with Habitat for Humanity.

Ganetis, meanwhile, is preparing for commencement in May and hopes to attend graduate school in the fall, where she plans to pursue coastal meteorological research. "I still can't believe I'm graduating," said the Honors College student. "I like reflecting on my Circle K involvement and how much I have grown from a shy first-semester freshman to an enthusiastic and loud senior!"

To learn more about other opportunities where you can make a World of Difference, visit UAlbany's Community Connections.

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