U of M RSO Empowers Memphis Youth
A new RSO promises to empower and motivate young Memphians. Setting The Standard Enterprise was started by Jeremy Calhoun in December 2012. Originally a small, for-profit business, it has since grown and become a non-profit organization, dedicated to giving back to the community and assisting the youth of Memphis in becoming greater than their circumstances. Over the summer, it became a registered student organization at the U of M. Shahid Tate, a junior and president of the organization, explained what attracted him to the organization.
“Every Valentine’s Day, what I normally do is go to Walgreens and buy four or five little teddy bears for 3 dollars and give them to different people because there are a lot of people who aren’t excited for it,” Tate said. “There is a lot of people who hate Valentine’s Day because they don’t have a special someone, so I try to bring a smile to a few people’s faces.”Tate came across STS and noticed that the organization was doing the same thing by getting involved and interacting with the community.
“Around that time, I happened to catch STS outside, going up to people in groups and telling them that they’re beautiful, giving those hugs and gifts which brought smiles to their faces, and I thought that was awesome,” Tate said. “At that moment I said to myself that I have to become a part of this organization.”
Tate set up a meeting with the cofounder of STS, Alton Cryer, to gather more information about the organization and upcoming events. He immediately found his niche.
“The first event that I went to as a member was Bridging the Gap, which was a breakfast at the senior home, and that was awesome and extremely humbling,” Tate said. “There was over 50 U of M students there, dressed up in black shirts and slacks as servers, a live band and entertainment.”
When the decision was made to take STS to the University as an RSO, Tate was tapped as the president. He believes that the group will grow quickly.
“The distinction between non-profit and chapter was recently made,” Tate said. “Currently we have six members on board. We just started our chapter as a RSO on campus, but based off the interests’ sheet at the RSO fair, we have about 60 people who are interested in becoming a part of STS Enterprise.”
An upcoming event will allow students to experience what STS is all about. On Sept. 27, STS will hold a senior cookout for the elderly, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. The idea behind the event is to unite college students and local volunteer with the elderly.
STS has partnered with Wesley Senior Ministries and their Highland Meadows senior community to create an event that brings two different generations together for a time of laughter and joy. Students and volunteers will spend a couple of hours interacting with the residents by talking to them, reading with them, playing games and generally getting to know them.
“The purpose of this event is to bring excitement and youthfulness to the senior community, while leaving each resident with a smile, a sense of love, and a feeling of appreciation,” Tate said. “Community service hours are rewarded to participants as well.”