A new organization making its way to Southern Miss is Circle K Club. Circle K Club is a nonprofit collegiate service organization and is the world’s largest student-led service organization. With the motto “Making the world better, one project at a time,” Circle K Club is a collegiate version of the service-oriented high school club Key Club.
In order for the Circle K Club to be official, there must be 10 Southern Miss student members. For national recognition, there must be 15 participating students.
Circle K Club does not stop after college, being a member is a lifestyle. Being involved in this service organization is continual from Key Club in high school to Circle K Club in college and Kiwanis in adulthood.
Junior public relations major Jillian Wohlgemuth serves as president.
Influenced by her parents being in their local Kiwanis Club, Wohlgemuth joined Key Club. After she graduated from high school, she searched for a new service environment.
Wohlgemuth was asked if she would start a Circle K Club on the Southern Miss campus by the Hattiesburg Kiwanis club.
Wohlgemuth hopes that Circle K Club will be a diverse and inclusive club.
“I hope there is a growth in membership where a member from each demographic is represented in Circle K Club,” Wohlgemuth said.
Vice President Nicole Gomez was also a member of her high school’s Key Club. Being from New Orleans, she saw that many people needed help in her community. Gomez is hopeful that this club will thrive and serve the community of Hattiesburg in a great capacity.
Freshman nursing major Gomez said she hopes to see the club grow during her next three years at Southern Miss.
“I am excited about planning and organizing the service projects,” Gomez said. “I hope that we can do projects such as donating stuffed animals to children in hospitals, hosting a bingo night for nursing home residents and tutoring children in an after-school program.”
Members will complete at least five hours of service a month. These service projects will benefit the surrounding Hattiesburg community at least once a month.
“By serving the Hattiesburg community, I am working with a diverse group of people that make me love this town even more, and I am able to give back just a small portion of what Southern Miss has given to me,” Wohlgemuth said.
The Circle K Club will sponsor the Trunk or Treat in October with Woodly Elementary. In November, Circle K Club plans to partner with Edward Street Fellowship Center’s food pantry by having a food drive to collect canned goods. The organization encourages everyone who donates to write words of encouragement on the bags that are given to those in need.
Circle K Club will have their next meeting at 5 p.m. on Oct. 3. For more information on Circle K Club, follow the group’s Facebook page at Southern Miss-Circle K Club.