The 2016 version of The BIG Event, at Ferris State University, featured record student volunteer and residential participation, according to organizers.
The Student Government Association hosted its ninth annual BIG Event on Saturday, April 16. The opening ceremony featured a welcome from Mark Warba, the mayor of Big Rapids; Jeanine Ward-Roof, Ferris’ vice president for Student Affairs; Wayne Bersano, president of Student Government; and Kaitlyn Patrick, director of philanthropy.
This year, The BIG Event featured a record 1,739 volunteers and a record 285 residential homes served to make it the largest one hosted by Ferris.
“All of the FSUSGA is proud to host The BIG Event as it provides a way for us to bridge the gap between the campus and the community,” said Bersano, the outgoing Student Government president who served the 2015-16 academic year.
A primary mission of The BIG Event is for students to get out into the Big Rapids community and give back as a way to say thanks. As part of this effort, the director position for The BIG Event, this year, became part of the cabinet of Bersano’s administration, as director of philanthropy. The BIG Event organizers wanted to greatly increase participation to set the bar high for future editions.
“The BIG Event means so much to us, an organization, and even more to our local community,”
Patrick said. “Not only were we able to better our programmatic efforts, as an organization,
but we were able to tremendously increase our numbers and the overall morale towards
The BIG Event is the largest one-day, student-run philanthropic event in the state of Michigan.
PHOTO CAPTION: Here is a scene from The BIG Event, which took place on Saturday, April 16 in Big Rapids, Mich. Ferris State University students participate in a large-scale, student-run community service project in the Big Rapids community. The 2016 edition featured a record number of volunteers and homes to be served.