MISSOULA – Despite not being able to host concerts or events, the Entertainment Management Program at the University of Montana College of Business found a way to impact Montana.
Over the course of five weeks during fall semester, students in the UMEM Event Management course raised over $5,500 to provide 16,572 meals for the Montana Food Bank Network. The annual partnership between UMEM and MFBN is in its fourth year for the Feed Montana statewide campaign, and it has been a real motivator for the students with an opportunity to help give back to a worthy cause.
MFBN is the only statewide food bank in Montana, partnering with over 230 food banks, food pantries, homeless shelters and community programs to distribute food to those in need around the state.
A total of 10 student teams used their resources and the skills they learned in the UMEM program to find creative ways to fundraise during the global pandemic. The teams finished the course and their fundraising efforts with more than 300 service hours completed.
“We worked hard to organize all the moving parts and come up with creative ways for hosting events,” UMEM student Connor Dennis said. “We learned communication was very important to coordinating our team’s efforts.”
While the efforts of the UMEM students will impact many Montanans, the course also had a big impact on many students in the course.
“Partnering with the Montana Food Bank Network really opened my eyes to the statistics of hunger in Montana,” student Sunshine Mohler said. “I found it interesting just how much people were willing to give to a great cause, even in the midst of a pandemic.”
For student Cody Lloyd, the course and partnership not only helped him understand the issue of hunger and how the MFBN addresses the issue, it also helped him earn employment.
“I feel that being able to put this experience on my resume helped when I was looking for a job and ultimately landing a job,” Lloyd said.
As part of MFBN’s Feed Montana program, the 16,500 meals donated will be able to feed many individuals for an entire year. So far this year, 173,838 meals have been donated through the Feed Montana program.
“It’s great to be able to work with so many different groups and create so many great partnerships throughout Montana,” MFBN events and communications coordinator Taylor Flores said. “Each group brings new ideas and a new perspective when it comes to fundraising for meals. We are grateful for the UMEM students’ efforts again this year!”
To learn more about Feed Montana and to help join the fight against hunger in Montana, visit the MFBN website at www.feedmt.org. To learn more about the UMEM program, visit their webpage on the UM College of Business website at www.business.umt.edu/umem.
Contact: Dr. Michael Morelli, Director of UM Entertainment Management, 406-243-5810, firstname.lastname@example.org.