Students in the Myron B. Thompson School of Social Work have come together to help other University of Hawaiʻi students who are facing financial burdens due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In April, the Phi Alpha, Nu Sigma (PANS) Chapter, an honor society for bachelors’ and masters’ students in social work, made a $1,000 donation to the UH Foundation’s Urgent Student Relief Fund.
PANS officers stated that the donation was spurred by their roles as future social workers. While the PANS funds would typically be used to help pay for club activities such as an induction ceremony, student socials, a department graduation celebration and a scholarship donation, the COVID-19 pandemic brought many of their planned activities to a halt, giving the officers the option to use their funds to assist UH students in need.
“Our treasurer notified the rest of the executive board that we had extra funds left and she suggested that we donate some of our proceeds to an emergency relief fund to help university students,” PANS President Julia Anne Baccaro said. “We unanimously agreed to donate to the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa’s Urgent Student Relief Fund.”
Baccaro added, “As aspiring social workers, it is our kuleana (responsibility) to care, respect and service the most vulnerable groups and individuals in our community. Through this donation, we hope to relieve some financial stress to the students who were affected by COVID-19 and give students the ability to continue their education.”
–By Mari Ono