There may not be snow, there may not be reindeer, but there will be certainly be plenty of holiday cheer at Mercyhurst College when Mercyhurst Student Government collaborates with more than 10 other campus organizations and the Mercyhurst community to celebrate “Christmas on Campus” with about 100 underprivileged children from the Erie community.
On Saturday, Dec. 14, between 1 and 4 p.m., dozens of students from Mercyhurst will fill the Carolyn Herrmann Student Union with holiday decorations and Christmas excitement for area children brought to the campus for the day.
Each young visitor is paired with a Mercyhurst student “buddy” and can play holiday games, create their own Christmas crafts, and visit with Santa. At the end of the day, the children gather in the student union’s Great Room together to hear the telling of “Twas the Night Before Christmas,” as read by associate professor of English Barry McAndrew, while enjoying milk and cookies. Following their snack, the youngsters will open their presents from Santa Claus.
The entire Mercyhurst community supports the annual Christmas on Campus event, from student volunteers who work that day to students and employees who donate funds, time and gifts in the weeks prior to the event.
Anne Siegel organized this year’s event with the help of Kerry Moriarty, Jessica Montana, Addie Risner, Kelly Rose Duttine, Tracy Heranic, Patrick Neubert, Jessica Ellam, Meghan Morhse, Marie Vogan, Alison Royer, Lauren Griglak and Jessie Verbic. Penny Hanes, associate professor of accounting, and Cass Shimek, associate dean of student development, are staff advisers for the event.
Organizations sponsoring activities during Christmas on Campus include: the Music Educators National Conference, Circle K (Kiwanis), Beta Beta Beta (Biology Honor Society), Mercyhurst Student Government, the Student Activities Committee, Alpha Pi Sigma (Criminal Justice Honor Society), Diversity 101, the Fashion Merchandising Club, Student Dietetic Association, Intervarsity Christian Fellowship and the Council for Exceptional Children. The American Society of Interior Design will be handling the decorations for the student union.