FLORENCE – Meet people, have fun, raise money, help others – that’s the motto of the Francis Marion University psychology club.
The group has established a scholarship for FMU sociology and psychology students; raised money for a local individual in need; worked with the Mental Health Association in Florence County delivering mental health puppet shows to children at the Mt. Zion Apartments and Theodore Lester Elementary School; is coordinating a canned-food drive to assist Manna House in Florence; offered a midnight bowling trip for FMU students at Southgate Bowling Alley; and is raising money to assist with Special Olympics, just to name a few of the recent activities of the group.
They are hosting a barbecue fundraiser on campus this Friday, Feb. 26 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. to raise money for Special Olympics, held annually at the FMU athletic fields. The club helps coordinate volunteers to assist with the Special Olympics, set for Tuesday, April 6, and the money raised at the upcoming barbecue will help defray costs of T-shirts provided to the Special Olympics participants.
Volunteers, last year about 1,300 folks including FMU students, assisted the Special Olympians by cheering them on at their events and by helping them get from one event to another.
The interaction with the community and one another, says Jeff Anastasi, the Francis Marion University psychology club adviser and assistant professor of psychology, is what’s important. And he should know. He was one of those students who went to college, but spent his spare time studying, never getting involved with those around him.
“I know better now,” he says.
Sandy Schultz, president of the group, says interaction over the past couple of years as a group member and leader, have helped her to solidify her career goals and given her the ability to be confident.
The FMU Psychology Club is open to anyone on campus interested in psychology and the human service fields; It is not just for psychology majors, Schultz and Anastasi stress.
There are no dues. The only requirement for membership is to be an FMU student and to want to get involved.
Club members come from all disciplines on campus. Other officers in the group in addition to Schultz, a senior psychology major from Darlington, are Julian Price, a psychology major from Winnsboro who serves as vice president; Chaneka Linton, a sociology major from Hartsville who serves as secretary; and Amber Schoming, a business economics major from Batesburg who serves as public relations coordinator for the group.
The group receives no funds from the FMU student government association, but works hard to raise its money. The group, along with members of the FMU Baptist Student Union, works once each spring and once each fall to park cars and does whatever is needed at the Darlington Raceway.
Each group makes about $1,250 each time they work at the racetrack. Funds raised help offset costs associated with the club’s new scholarship, campus activities and Special Olympics. The club’s recently established scholarship for psychology and sociology majors at FMU will provide a $300 scholarship beginning Fall 1999.
The group has donated $1,000 to begin the scholarship and plans to make future donations. The scholarship will be awarded to a freshman with a 3.0 minimum grade point average on a 4.0 scale and a minimum 1000 on SAT or to an upperclassman who maintains a 3.0 GPA.
Currently the psychology club and BSU are co-sponsoring a canned food drive to benefit the Manna House in Florence. The goal is to collect 1,999 cans in honor of the FMU senior class of 1999. To date the drive has produced 1,031 cans with four weeks remaining
Trying to show students and the community that the seven miles separating Florence and FMU are not so far, the psychology club will continue to seek ways to serve the community.
For more information about the FMU psychology club, contact Anastasi at 843-661-1633, Schultz at 843-395-6612, or visit the club’s website at www.fmarion.edu/~psychclub.