In normal academic years, Tau Beta Pi (TBP)—the honor society for the UK College of Engineering—participates in numerous outreach activities through STEM activities and other programs. Due to the ongoing pandemic, most of TBP’s activities scheduled for this fall were canceled.
However, at the suggestion of alumnus Steve Polston (BSME 1970), TBP began raising funds for coffee that would be donated to New Life Day Center, a mission in Lexington that serves over 150 homeless individuals each day. Mr. Polston, who was inducted into the UK College of Engineering’s Hall of Distinction in 2019, founded New Life Day Center in 2010.
Under the leadership of TBP member John Ronkainen, TBP raised $440 that was then matched by an anonymous donor and funds TBP had received from the Wildcat Cage event in September. In total, TBP raised over $1,200—or enough to purchase 390 pounds—of coffee for New Life Day Center. TBP sent 425 pounds of coffee in all.
“It was very uplifting to see how our donations delighted the staff and volunteers at the New Life Day Center, and I was very inspired by our teamwork,” said Ronkainen. “With the help of everybody who donated, we made a little effort on everyone's part go a long way toward serving the Lexington homeless community.”