Tarleton is gearing up for Round Up

The JTAC Francisco Castro
The Purple Poo help pull weeds at their job site.

Tarleton State University will be continuing Round Up on Saturday, March 30 after 20 successful years. Round Up is a day that offers students, faculty and staff the opportunity to go into the Stephenville community and help those who cannot do tasks that may seem easy to us but can be difficult for them. Round Up is student lead, the students on the leadership team are very passionate about giving back to the community. The students get grouped into teams and go to homes of the elderly, at need and even average families who need help with tasks around their home or property. Students can do tasks like raking, painting, cleaning out gutters, planting flower beds and many more.

The process to apply for a home to become a job site was intentionally made easy to help the community. One way to apply is an ad in the “Stephenville Empire-Tribune” a week throughout February and that can be filled out and mailed. The other way is to go online to tarleton.edu/roundup and there will be a link to an online form to fill out. Once the applications get received, members of the leadership team will go out and evaluate the sites to make sure it is safe for students and to see what is needed to be done. Volunteers can apply through the same link, tarleton.edu/roundup. However, if there was to be a group of students, 10 and more, Erin Warner, Community Service & Food Pantry Coordinator, recommends typing out everyone’s name on an excel sheet and email that to [email protected] For both applications the deadline is Wednesday, February 20.

On average, they have 120 to 170 job sites for students to help at. Warner has constantly had around 1600 to 1800 volunteers, but she would like to reach 2000 to 2500 students. If there are not enough volunteers, Warner has to deny job sites, which does not happen often. The leadership team breaks groups into about 10 to 12 students; however, depending on what the job site entails, the groups could include seven students or even 15. She hopes to gain more student volunteers so more of the Stephenville community can be reached and helped.

The Greek students at Tarleton also help during Round Up. Alpha Omicron Pi Sorority member Sydney Patty has participated in Round Up for two years now. 

The JTAC Francisco Castro
Blake Thompson and Dalton Divorak help out during Round Up 2018 along with their fellow Sigma Chi brothers.

“Our members get together as a group and then split up into different teams so we can reach more of the Stephenville community,” Patty said. “We do various tasks while at these homes, ranging from painting, raking yards, planting flowers, cutting bushes and many other things.” 

Cody Worth, a junior in Lambda Chi Alpha enjoys working with his fraternity and giving back to the community and people. Worth has participated in two Round Ups and this year he plans on doing it again. 

“We try to get everyone involved and we are more than happy to do whatever the university throws our way,” Worth said.

The Round Up board advertises the event through banners on campus, they can show up in your organization meeting, flyers, table events and social media. Warner believes the best way to reach the students have been through social media and going to the meetings because they are able to talk and ask questions and get more information.

For any student who has been thinking about signing up and volunteering, Warner encourages you to sign up this year. 

“There are a lot of friendships made,” Warner said. “This is one of the most transformative experiences that the university offers.” 

Do not be afraid to come alone, because you will always be being working with someone and it gives you a chance to make new friends. Grab a friend or neighbor and sign up, it is only a few hours on a Saturday morning. 

“Being able to give back to someone who needs it, in Stephenville, that you can drive past their house and see that you were able to help them,” Warner said. 

Even you think, “oh they won’t need me”, but working through that day you will see that the community does need any help that they can get. Everyone is going through something and could always need help, it could be a single mom who can’t get out and mow, or an elderly woman who may have lost her husband and can’t get out to plant her spring flowers or even someone who may have an illness and hasn’t been able to get out and clean their front lawn.

“Having an opportunity to make that impact on someone,” Warner. “You should just say yes.” 

Be a part of a big tradition, there is food and music, even alumni come out and help because they remember doing it. 

“The community really depends on it, it’s just a chance and opportunity to be a part of something bigger than yourself,” Warner said. “I just really want to share that message of encouragement.”

Sign up by yourself or gather your friends and sign up to help the community at tarleton.edu/roundup.