Staff Senate hosts holiday bazaar to raise Rosa Gibson Book Scholarship funds

Some of the items being sold at the Holiday Bazaar — photo credit to Rebecca Heald

The Staff Senate organizes several fundraisers throughout the school year to collect money for the “Rosa Beth Gibson book scholarship,” which “supports and inspires staff members and their families to pursue educational opportunities,” Communications Committee Chair Sammy Coy and Special Events Committee Co-Chair Lacie Devine wrote to The Trail in an email.

At the Nov. 29 Holiday Bazaar, campus members could find baked goods and crafts made by students who donated their work. Donations are also accepted from people and business from outside the University.

Some articles that were sold at the bazaar were snowman-shaped cookies, tree ornaments, brownies wrapped as gift boxes and many more Christmas-based items.

The event was organized by the Staff Senate’s Special Events Committee, whose members are Lacie Devine from Mail Services and Haley Harshaw form Alumni and Parent Relations.

In previous years, the money for this scholarship was collected by selling books; however, this year it was obtained during the Holiday Bazaar. There already are other organizations that take donated books, so this change collects money in a more unique way. It demonstrates that “Puget Sound is overflowing with immensely talented and creative staff, faculty, and students – incorporating crafts into this fundraiser is a way of showcasing that,” Coy and Devine wrote to The Trail in an email.

Therefore, the participation of University of Puget Sound’s community was more important than previous years. Without the community putting some effort in making beautiful merchandise, there would be nothing to sell and collect money from.

The people working at the bazaar are “elected senators, but staff don’t need to be senators to get involved in staff senate’s many important roles on campus” since “service to the University is encouraged in the Staff Compensation Policy,” Coy and Devine wrote.

The money obtained from the sales of the goods donated goes directly to the scholarship, so the amount available to support staff and their families depends on the amount of money collected during the Bazaar.

“The more money we raise means the more people can receive it! The Holiday Bazaar isn’t Staff Senate’s only opportunity to raise funds: we have our annual Basket Raffle in the spring, as well,” Coy and Devine wrote.

Last year Staff Senate collected almost $1,000. By the end of the first day of the bazaar, $500 had already been obtained.

The applications for the scholarships “are opened following the Basket Raffle in the Spring. The application is posted on the Staff Senate website and information is sent through the staff list serve. The Staff Senate Special Events Committee will review applications for the scholarship. Following their review, they submit their recommendations to the Staff Senate Executive Committee. The amount of money received will vary year-to-year, as the scholarship is dependent on the funds raised – this year is already looking promising!” Coy and Devine wrote.

Each staff member has an important role in the education of students at the University of Puget Sound, so this event is a good way of supporting them and their loved ones to pursue their passion by giving them financial aid. The Holiday Bazaar was able to accomplish all of this while demonstrating the talent of the University’s students.