500 Austin College Students Help Community Saturday - KTEN.com - Texoma news, weather and sports

500 Austin College Students Help Community Saturday

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GRAYSON COUNTY--An army of college students flooded streets in Sherman and Denison Saturday morning. It's a tradition that's been going on for years. Hundreds decided to wake up early and help the community.

It's not something you normally see at 8:30 on a Saturday morning. 500 college students--awake--and ready to work.

"It's really just knowing that you're helping somebody. I mean--it's a Saturday morning," Zach Bengston said, Austin College student. "Usually we'd be asleep now, but we woke up. We're out here--we're pulling weeds. It looks a lot better now." 

Zach Bengston and hundreds of other Austin College students volunteered all over the Denison and Sherman area, giving non-profit organizations a helping hand.

"Sherman--like--there's a lot of places over here like a lot of non profit organizations that do need a lot of help so we're glad to be there for them to help out," Vasanthi Gomathinayagan said, Austin College Service Station Board member. 

The Children's Advocacy Center--one of the dozens of non-profits--is thankful for the effort.

"I'm so excited that they're here to help us out," Denise Strekal said, Children's Advocacy Center employee. "We get a lot of support from Austin College. The Children's Advocacy center really needs this kind of help."

Other students helped their neighborhood by painting street addresses on curbsides. It wasn't just painting numbers. The now-visible addresses will also help first-responders.

"They have to act really quick and if they're losing time--looking for the numbers they won't make it in time--maybe--you know," Diana Tirado said, Austin College student. "And so, if they have the numbers they can see it really easily and just stop and go."

Despite the early morning, the volunteers weren't worn out. Many plan on doing it again next year.

"It's been going on for so many years, it's just kind of an Austin College tradition and everybody gets up on Saturday and does it and has a great time and we have--we always hear great stories about it afterwards and they really enjoy it every year," Erin Moler said, Austin College Service Station Board member

No matter how early, the tradition of helping the community isn't expected to end any time soon.

Jen French, KTEN News