JSU’s Office of Community Development kicks off the school year with Crop Drop ‘23

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JANS – Roughly 100 Jackson State University students volunteered to give back to the community the institution calls home. During the eighth JSU Crop Drop, the students distributed 10,000 pounds of sweet potatoes, 300 watermelons, and 1,000 cases of water. Student volunteers arrived at 7 a.m., and the giveaway lasted from 9 a.m. to noon.

The JSU Office of Community Engagement and volunteers served over 500 families in three hours. Central Mississippi Health Services, Southern Echo Incorporated, Jacobs Solutions, and the Society of St. Andrew helped sponsor the giveaway.

“Jackson State is located in an urban area in West Jackson, the proud West Jackson, but the community is in need, and this is one way for us to give back to the community and introduce our freshmen to community service,” explained Heather Denne’, director of the Office of Community Development.

Hundreds of cars lined up on Pearl Street with people waiting to be greeted by the high-spirited JSU students as they received the fresh produce. The popularity of the bi-annual service event has been on a constant incline, and several members of the community said they’ve attended several Crop Drops over the years.

“I’m an alum, and I think it’s wonderful that Jackson State does this for the community,” said Ella Holmes, a Jackson native. “I always come to get some of the vegetables.”

The giveaway aligns with the university’s mission to expose students to the importance of community service. The philanthropic work done by the university attracted the attention of Jack Spears, a junior biology student from Mississippi College, who was motivated to dedicate some time to volunteer alongside the JSU students.

“I wanted to come and see the hard work that’s being done, and I came to take photos and video to bring more awareness to the good things you all are doing,” said Spears, “I’m doing some awareness research to bring attention to this type of work.”

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JSU’s Office of Community Development kicks off the school year with Crop Drop ‘23

By Jackson Advocate News Service
September 11, 2023