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By Maura Jensen


Repainting the U.S. map.
Photo by Lois Christ.

Eller MBA staff and students participated in a clean-up day at Mission View Elementary School in late January, which was coordinated by MBA staff including Kristy Ruiz, Connie Bell, and Lorin Killian.

The UA Office of Community Relations connected the team with the charity project, which was intentionally coordinated as part of the Martin Luther King Jr. day of service on January 20. The goal was to get MBA students across all of the platforms (Evening, Full-Time, Executive, and Online MBA) to meet and work with each other for the good of the community.

Eller MBA students weren’t the only ones involved with the event. Volunteers from all over Tucson came out to get their hands dirty with the clean-up effort. Students and parents from Mission View Elementary School, school administrators and teachers, and representatives from the Gospel Rescue Mission all volunteered their time.  Some workers were tasked with re-painting a map of the United States located on a cement slab at the back of the school. Others did yard work on a vacant lot located across the street, which included trimming mesquite trees, weeding, and picking up trash. Another group of volunteers spent their time digging up a garden bed and then helping the Mission View students to plant vegetables.

Vinay Nenwani, an Eller MBA student, said that he enjoyed the opportunity to connect with other students and volunteers. “The most rewarding thing for me was the satisfaction I got by helping the community and bonding with others. Burning calories was an unexpected bonus,” he said.


Students prep for painting.
Photo by Lois Christ.

Paige Bausman, the director of the Online MBA program, said that she was glad the MBA students were able to come together and serve the community in a new way. “It was nice to help out at Mission View so that our students could see a part of Tucson that they don’t typically visit,” she said of the school, which is located in South Tucson.

After a whole morning of work, the Gospel Rescue Mission volunteers provided the workers with lunch and the Eller students were given MBA t-shirts for their hard work. Dave Cox, an Eller MBA student, said that the effort was well worth the end result – a clean school and a grateful community. “By the end of the event, the vacant lot was in much better condition, and many students and local residents professed their gratitude for our hard work,” he said.

The MBA office plans to coordinate more service days in the future.

Top image of Mission View Elementary School courtesy TUSD.