Students contribute to “beautifying” campus

On Saturday, March 29, Tech students awoke bright and early to volunteer their time and efforts to the sixteenth annual Tech Beautification Day (TBD).

While it may seem rare for college students to wake up so early and even rarer for them to agree to do hard labor, Tech Beautification Day draws hundreds of students across campus. With full stomachs, tools in hand and a passion for service in their hearts, the students marched out to their various stations. There, they spent a morning in the sun wholeheartedly working to improve Tech’s campus.

Jessica Webster, a fourth-year ISyE major, served as a co-chair for the event. She has served on the TBD Executive Board all four years of her undergraduate career and believes without a doubt its one of the worthiest contributions she has made to Tech.

“These past four years have been very rewarding…not to mention, a lot of fun,” Webster said.

While all the students work towards beautifying campus, different groups work on different projects around campus. Webster, however, does have her favorite ones.

“Every year, TBD does 80 plus projects around the [Tech] community. A couple projects that have been standouts for me would have to be ones that entail painting murals or planting trees,” Webster explained. “Projects like these allow volunteers to leave their mark on Tech for years to come, which I think is pretty unique and exciting.”

Gabrielle Lupacchino, a first-year BA major, was proud of her contribution to Tech’s campus.

“When we were planting these golden flowers near the Biotech Quad, one of the many landscape workers who works to keep Tech’s campus beautiful said with great pleasure, ‘In a year, you will look at Tech and see this sea of beautiful gold flowers and you’ll remember you did that.’ Tech Beautification Day made me realize that we aren’t just making our campus beautiful, but we are helping others, like this man, achieve the beautiful vision he sees for Tech, and a vision that we should see, too. Tech Beautification Day is one step towards that vision,” Lupacchino said.

Despite the success of this year’s TBD, Webster’s favorite memory comes from 2012.

That year, President G. P. “Bud” Peterson was a guest at the Morning Celebrations. Peterson easily captivated and motivated students to seek out service opportunities, and he was eager to compliment and recognize the hard work of past and future TBD participants.

According to Webster, there are more reasons than service for students to participate in TBD. Volunteers are offered a free breakfast, lunch, snacks, t-shirt and numerous give-aways. Even more, Buzz, the Ramblin’ Wreck and WREK Radio are also known to make appearances from time to time.

While TBD itself lasts, not surprisingly, just one day, the preparations for the event take nearly all year.

While most of the students sign up to volunteer just a month or even days before the event, the TBD Executive board will begin work for next year’s event in September.

“The most challenging task the 2014 TBD Executive Board undertook this year was trying to find the balance between recruiting volunteers and creating projects for them to work on. You don’t want to have more of one than the other,” Webster said.

TBD is an annual event where faculty, staff, students and alumni can join forces to improve the Tech that everyone sees day-to-day.

It is a tangible, effective and visible improvement students can admire and remember for  years to come.