**For Immediate Release**
SOEA Serves Community
- released by OPSU Campus Communications 03-13-2008
By Laura Hays
Goodwell, Okla. -- Members of Oklahoma Panhandle State University’s Student Oklahoma Education Association (SOEA) sponsored a Scholastic Book Fair to benefit the Optima, Okla. Elementary school. SOEA, one of the most active service learning groups on campus, raised well over $500 worth of books for the school. They delivered them March 12, and some of the college students read to the younger students. Optima superintendent Rex Hale assured Jerry Mihelic, SOEA advisor, that “the books will be the best-loved ones in the school.” The school district has often cooperated with OPSU interns, allowing them to complete their student teaching, and also permit students to use their classrooms for observation.
The chair of the Book Fair, Antoinette Trentham, worked hard to organize, set up, and take down the project, and Mihelic would like to thank all of the community members who purchased books as well as Jessica Lofland and Maggie Cline. This year’s SOEA officers include President Lindsey Sims; Vice President Kelly Reid; Secretary Kara Hays; and Treasurer Annette Lamerson.
SOEA members stay engaged in the community in many ways. They tutor Academy School students in Guymon once per week, and will also help monitor state tests in Goodwell in April. For the past two years, the future educators have participated in effort “Outreach to Teach,” a program in which the students help refurbish public schools. This year OPSU’s chapter along with chapters statewide helped at Crutcho Public Schools on Friday, March 7. In addition, during the December holiday season, the industrious group also reaches out to families in need in Texhoma, Goodwell and Guymon. In April, SOEA will fulfill their obligations for their part in the Adopt a Highway project along Highway 54.
These devoted volunteers of OPSU’s SOEA chapter prove they have what it takes to make exceptional teachers dedicated to providing quality education.