Thanksgiving is a time for sharing and the first year students at West Liberty University did just that recently when the class donated hundreds of items of food to the Catholic Charities Neighborhood Center, 125-18th St., Wheeling.

From left, Jim Compston, Bridgette Dawson, Becky Sheerer, Kenzie Sylvester, Jamie Coen-Pickens are ready to pack the food for donation.

From left, Jim Compston, Bridgette Dawson, Becky Sheerer, Pittsburgh, Kenzie Sylvester, Parkersburg, W.Va., Anthony Herbert, Charles Town, W.Va. and Jamie Coen-Pickens are ready to pack the food donation.

“We are pleased to be able to make this donation and help our community. We consider service to the community an important part of a West Liberty University education,” said Bridgette Dawson, director of the WLU Learning and Student Development Center, which coordinated the service project.

“We’re grateful for the students of West Liberty and for their involvement in donating to the Neighborhood Center, especially this time of year when we see so much need in the community,” said P.J. Reindel, director of the center. “We provide over 550 food baskets per month to families in need and 12,000 meals every month. This donation is very much appreciated and we look forward to working with the students in the future.”

The well-known Wheeling center serves hot-cooked meals and delivers bagged lunches to the home bound as part of its outreach.

The donation was a result of a canned food drive that was part of the Freshman Olympic Games, held in October. The games promote teamwork and create lifelong friendships, according to Dawson.

“I’m glad to help the community out, especially since I’m from out–of-town and anxious to be a part of Wheeling,” said Becky Sheerer, Pittsburgh, who is a dental hygiene major.

“We also want to thank Riesbeck’s Food Markets for once again being our title sponsor. Thanks to Riesbeck’s generosity, each Olympian received an event t-shirt designed by WLU’s graphic design student, Chloe Woods,” Dawson added. Vice President of Community Outreach Jeff Knierim coordinated the donor involvement.

Dawson also was assisted in the Freshman Olympics by Area Coordinator for First Year Residential Experience Jim Compston and Retention Specialist Jamie Coen Pickens.

West Liberty University is a forward-looking, four-year public university steeped in a rich heritage as West Virginia’s oldest institution of higher education. Led by President Robin C. Capehart, West Liberty is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. For more information on WLU, please visit or call 1.866.WESTLIB.