Selma Tornado Relief
'CommUniversity' in Action - ASU Helps with Selma Disaster Relief Effort; Offers Assistance to Residents of Tornado Ravaged City!
By Kenneth Mullinax/ASU
Under the umbrella of “CommUniversity,” Alabama State University reaches out to help residents and communities in need. The latest ASU CommUniversity initiative took place on January 27 when ASU students and employees joined a convoy of local volunteers to provide much-needed supplies to tornado-ravaged Selma, Ala.
The community volunteers, led by State Representative Penni McClammy (District 76), met up with student volunteers at ASU’s Dunn-Oliver Acadome to take an 18-Wheeler full of supplies to Selma.
"At Alabama State, one of President Quinton T. Ross, Jr.'s top initiatives is providing CommUniversity to those in need. After the carnage and chaos that was inflicted by a tornado on Selma and its citizens last week, we could not think of a more meaningful mission than for us to adopt, lift-up and provide solace and assistance to the residents of Selma whose homes and possessions were damaged or destroyed," said Dr. Malinda Swoope, ASU’s vice president of Student Affairs.
ASU President, Dr. Quinton T Ross, Jr., praised the volunteers for their efforts.
“CommUniversity is one of the anchors of our Vision 2030 Strategic Plan,” Ross said. “Alabama State University is committed to providing assistance to those in need in the communities that surround this campus. I am extremely proud of our students, administrators and other volunteers who have worked so diligently to help to coordinate relief efforts for the residents of Selma.”
ASU AND LOCAL LEADER JOIN FORCES TO HELP SELMA
The University was approached by Representative McClammy who was also inspired to help the residents of Selma.
"I had been wanting to get involved in doing whatever I could do in helping all of the folks who were impacted by these horrific wind storms. So early on, I first led an effort to reach out to the residents of Flatwood, which is close to home in Montgomery County," McClammy stated.
She then concentrated her efforts in the Brownstown and Old Kingston areas in rural Autauga County where seven people were killed.
Doing that, I couldn't leave out Selma; but knowing that several hundred people were in dire straits there, I knew that I needed to link up with a community partner who not only had big muscles to execute such a relief effort, but also one with a big heart and that describes ASU to the letter. After learning that Alabama State University was also working on its own outreach plan, ASU and my Montgomery volunteers joined forces to maximize our efforts and positive impact on Selma and hence, our joint venture was born. It is a marriage made in heaven."
STUDENTS PLAYED A LEADERSHIP ROLE
Swoope said the muscle and heart behind the Selma Tornado Relief Effort effort was the Hornet Nation's students.
"The majority of our volunteers come from ASU's student body, led by our Student Government President Dylan Stallworth and Miss Alabama State University Aleah Robinson and her Royal Court, along with our SOS students and Golden Ambassadors, who all played pivotal roles in Bama State's outreach to Selma's citizens," stated Swoope.
ASU's Candace Davis works in the office of ASU's Chief of Staff and is also the advisor to ASU's student leadership.
"I am extremely proud of our student leaders’ enthusiasm and the energy that they have poured into this project," stated Davis. "They all work well together as a good team and exude great leadership skills, which are complemented by their professionalism."
LOCAL PARTNERS MADE IT POSSIBLE
The relief effort was supported by the generous assistance of a diverse list of community partners, including Alabama State University, Montgomery County government, Trenholm State, Selma University, Willis Animal Clinic, Chenaniah Films, That's My Dog JR Restaurant, Miss Alabama State University and her Royal Court and others.
"This is all about a team effort with everyone sharing in the work and recognition, and that is why our Selma Disaster Relief Effort has come together so well and been a success. At ASU, we are proud to be members of the Montgomery, River Region and Central Alabama community and this isn't new. We have cared about our community and its residents ever since our founding in 1867. Helping others is a Hornet Nation tradition," Swoope said.
News media contact: Kenneth Mullinax, 334-229-4104.