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Rucha Kunturkar

Getting Local and Giving Back: One STEM MBA Student Helps Fight Hunger

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Krannert MBA Students Help Fight Hunger

We see many social issues around us which compel us to think:

“Why can’t everyone on this planet get the same opportunities as everyone else?”

We tend to take our basic necessities such as food, clothing and shelter for granted, but it was a real eye-opener when I found out that 1 in 7 people are in need of food in the United States. Therefore, I decided to do my bit, not just think but act!

Recently I attended a Civic Engagement & Leadership Development (CELD) event to celebrate and support Hunger Action Day 2016. This event was supported by the newly established ACE campus food pantry in collaboration with Food to assist with a media campaign for the upcoming Hunger action month – September 2016. Additionally, the goal emphasized was to spread awareness amongst local businesses and encourage them to educate the community about hunger in Indiana.

Our team visited numerous shops in the Arts and Market district of downtown Lafayette as a part of these canvassing activities. This experience was so enriching that I have enrolled to volunteer with marketing efforts at the ACE food pantry to reach out to a wider audience and serve as many needy people as possible.

"I got an opportunity to work with people from different demographics, organizations, put my people management skills to the test."

As a Purdue student, I am surrounded by so many activities that I find it difficult to decide which ones to attend; I really wish there were 48 hours in a day! By participating in philanthropic activities, I not only help society but am also developing my time management and leadership skills. I am learning to balance my rigorous coursework and social activities by managing my time effectively.

By participating in these volunteer activities, I get a chance to apply business concepts that I’ve learned in class to the real world, thus understanding them better.  I also got an opportunity to work with people from different demographics, organizations and streams, which put my people management skills to the test. Through this experience I’ve met people not only from Purdue, but from all walks of life which has enriched my network outside of campus. All of these factors have prepared me better as a business professional since such education extends beyond the classroom.

As a future business professional, I strongly believe that if you aspire to grow a business, you must think of society first. We must find different ways to serve via CSR activities or by innovating products that will add something beneficial to society. For example, within the automotive industry, perhaps you would more heavily promote a car that has negligible harmful emissions thus minimizing carbon footprint, or help market an energy efficient air conditioning system. The possibilities are endless. This ‘society first’ attitude will not only prove best as it will become a differentiating factor for your firm, but it also creates a long-term relationship with your customers, as you emphasize serving them better by taking care of their problems. I think it would definitely be a loss for students who do not participate in social activities for a cause in which they believe. Purdue University provides a platform to its students to participate in community action via a weekly and monthly e-mail update on volunteer opportunities.

To register for these updates, just click here.

Rucha Vijay Kunturkar

1st Year  ( 1 Year STEM MBA Student)