Alpha Phi Alpha promotes community, campus awareness during APA week

By Eboni Lacey

April 1, 2012

[caption id="attachment_10067" align="alignleft" width="150" caption="Alpha Phi Alpha member DeAndre Diamond shakes hands with student Elie Moore after helping him fill out his voting registration card."][/caption]
The men of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity will be kicking off their official Alpha week with a basketball game, a career development event and the annual step show.
President of APA Mark Bush said that the goal of Alpha week this year is to educate people on important issues such as community service, networking and educational improvement. One special goal is to get at least 100 students registered to vote in St. Joseph, Bush said. “There is a ballot coming out on April 3 here in St. Joe voting on school district employees and things like that, and we would like people to be involved there and also definitely vote for the next president in November. I was looking at the statistics here in St. Joe and only 13 percent of the population voted in the last opportunity we had here to vote. We want to make everyone aware of the need for community service here in St. Joe as we have a very large homeless population.” This Monday the boys went to Second Harvest to help out the St. Joseph community by serving and preparing food. On Tuesday, they set out a table in Blum right outside of the food court to catch the traffic and register students to vote. On Wednesday, the Alphas held a resume-building, interview etiquette and career-developing workshop with Career Services Director Donnell Turner. They will be hosting a “Rock & Jock” basketball pick-up game at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Commons basketball court. On Friday, the members are hosting an appreciation BBQ at 7 p.m. in the Commons courtyard. The final event is the annual step show, which starts at 7 p.m. Saturday and will include numerous step performances from greeks all over the Midwest, from Oklahoma to Nebraska. Western’s step team “Sounds of Ambition,” who won the competition last year, will also be performing. “A lot of students here on the campus mention not having a lot of activities to do here on campus,” Bush said. “We are trying to provide that with some of our fun events. We plan to collaborate a lot more with other organizations here on campus to promote unity. We should be having some events later this semester with some of the other organizations here on campus. It’s important for us to work together because of the level of networking. We make connections that can last a lifetime.” APA member Brandon Griffin, who was the president last semester, said that the members are really trying to focus on things other than fun, social events and want students to really learn and grasp something for the educational events. “For the first time in awhile he kind of stood away from the social aspect, and we are really trying to tap into the service,” Griffin said. We always get a great turnout at our step show and our party. We really want numbers at our service events.” Student and member of campus sorority Delta Sigma Theta Jessica Criss said that she is very proud of what the Alphas have been doing with their events and thinks the new members have been doing a great job with promoting and educating. “I’m excited to see what the new members of Alpha are going to bring to the university,”Criss said. “It’s been a lot of old members for awhile, and I’m really proud of the work these new Alphas have been doing thus far.”