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Engineering students extending holiday cheer

CoE junior Sarah Barker helps organize a toy drive benefiting Granny’s House that two Biological Engineering Department student groups are sponsoring. Photo by Laurie Wilson

A growing number of engineering students are adding “Granny” to their holiday gift–giving lists, expanding an annual tradition in hopes of benefiting more low–income youngsters.

Two College of Engineering groups, the Alpha Epsilon honors society and the Biological Engineering Club, are joining forces to collect toys to donate over the holidays to “Granny’s House,” a Christian outreach program on Trinity Place offering meals and after–school supervision for children living in Columbia’s public housing. While the toy drive is focusing on the groups’ Biological Engineering Department base, biological student group leaders hope to generate support for it throughout the engineering campus.

“The more people we get involved, the better chance we’ll have of getting more presents for Granny’s House,” said Nathan Granneman, a biological engineering senior and Alpha Epsilon president.

Reasoning along those lines persuaded the honors group—which has sponsored a Granny’s House toy drive for the last three years—to ask the Biological Engineering Club to cosponsor this year’s charitable effort, Granneman said.

Club members are working with the honors society to post flyers and organize collections for the toy drive, which will run through Dec. 14. The groups have placed collection bins in Rooms 215 and 254 of the Agricultural Engineering Building along Rollins Road.

Organizers hope that extending the toy drive’s reach will help them fulfill the Granny’s House wish list, said Sarah Barker, a biological engineering junior and the Biological Engineering Club’s publicity director.

“We’d like to contribute as much as we can,” Barker said.