The Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) is an organization within St. Mary’s College of Maryland (SMCM) which is composed of the student-athletes trying to create a better environment for students and the rest of the SMCM community. “We are the bridge between the student-athletes and the administration and the academic department, we touch all things athletic,” said Tennis SAAC representative Melissa Barall, ‘18, on the role of SAAC. “We are a committee that is trying to foster community and to bridge the athletes and the non-athletes.”
The SAAC’s most recent event is a children’s book drive. They are teaming up with an alumna, Hannah Schroeder, ‘17, who is currently a Peace Corps volunteer in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, in order to gather books to help teach English to first through sixth graders in the area. Schroeder reached out to a former executive SAAC board member that later reached out to this year’s SAAC president Sam Coomes, ‘19. “The country is relatively poor and they don’t have that great of access to books. This is to help [Schroeder] and the kids in the area.”
As this is SAAC’s first book drive, there is no finite end goal in mind: the student organization is aiming to get many books as possible. They are looking for books for elementary age children that are appropriate for reading to learn English. The book drive donation box is located at the entrance of the Michael P. O’Brien Athletics and Recreation Center (ARC) and is going to Oct. 26. They hope to get the books out to Hannah Schroeder during the winter break.
The SAAC hopes to continue doing different book drives along with the other drives and events that they have coming up for the semester. Some of these include trick-or-treating at the ARC for the children and a canned food drive that they have planned. The SAAC hopes to continue in creating new ways to improve student-athlete influence on campus.