Over 800 Lee University freshmen along with their Gateway instructors and Peer Leaders participated in the annual Pack ‘n’ Stack party on Nov. 12 in the Paul Dana Walker Arena. This year, the university crossed a milestone in packing over 35,000 shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child (OCC) over the past 20 years.
Dr. Mike Hayes, vice president for student development at Lee, spoke to the freshman class before the packing commenced and shared a personal testimony about his experience with OCC.
“OCC gives our entire freshman class the opportunity to work together for a common cause,” said Rochelle Mayberry, director of First Year Programs. “Our Gateway students serve in the local community throughout the semester, and this gives them a chance to consider other forms of service. We have the ability to offer a representation of God’s love to someone we may never meet. Thanks to the university’s support, we also get to have a ton of fun while doing it.”
The mission of Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child is to fill as many shoebox-sized boxes as possible with Christmas gifts to be distributed to children in need around the world.
Over 3,600 boxes were filled at Pack ‘n’ Stack this year, bringing the grand total to 37,634 boxes packed since Lee began partnering with the project in 1998.
In addition to the boxes packed that evening, other university offices and students packed boxes.
Pack ‘n’ Stack, which is organized for freshman Gateway classes, included 87 Peer Leaders, 44 Gateway instructors, and students involved with the Student Leadership Council at Lee.
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