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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Two UA frats clean up


Courtesy of Lior Schinagel

Members of the Alpha Epsilon Pi and Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternities came together for a community service project on Sunday. The fraternity members picked up pieces of trash and shards of glass from around the exterior and interior playground area at the Islamic Center of Tucson.

Two UA fraternities came together to clean up the Islamic Center of Tucson near campus last weekend.

“This morning marked the beginning of a partnership between SAE and AEPi that we are extremely excited about,” said Lior Schinagel, president of Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity and an MIS sophomore. “We hope to serve as an exemplary force for the greek community and aim to spread the partnership to all organizations that are interested in contributing.” 

About 40 fraternity members from Alpha Epsilon Pi and the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity teamed up to pick up trash and debris for this community service event.

“The main reason why we chose the Islamic Center of Tucson is because last semester, there was all this commotion and there wasn’t a close connection between the Islamic Center of Tucson and the students on campus,” said Zach Janikis, president of Sigma Alpha Epsilon and a finance junior. “So that was our biggest concern, to let them know that there are people here to help them, and we don’t want there to be any negativity there.” 

Schinagel said there were shards of glass in the playground at the Islamic Center of Tucson that had fallen from the surrounding high-rise apartments. He said the main concern of the fraternity men was to remove the dangerous objects and create a safe place for the children to play.

“The biggest thing we wanted to do was help replace the turf grass they have in the playground, but I talked to the office manager and he said they weren’t ready to do that yet,” Janikis said. “So I told them we would help them out in anyway we could.” 

Janikis said he was told by the Islamic Center that they hope to cover the playground sometime in the next couple of months. Janikis also said he extended the offer that, when they do begin renovations, the fraternities would be more than willing to help out.

“In the future I think we’d definitely want to engage more fraternities, but it was a cool thing to do just between AEPi and SAE,” Janikis said.

Schinagel said the greek community is full of people who are willing to dedicate a good portion of their time to benefit a larger purpose.

“For us to see that the Islamic Center of Tucson was getting all of these really terrible impressions of students at the UA based on the actions of just a few, … that’s something that we as fraternities can relate to,” Schinagel said. “We always get labeled by the actions of the few, so we found this as an opportunity to kind of reverse the roles, where the actions of a few of us paint a much better picture for the larger student community to the Islamic Center and, by extension, to the Tucson community.”

Robert Bloom, a mechanical engineering sophomore and member of AEPi, said giving back to the community is important to him on a personal level.

“I want the place that I am learning and living in to be one that is welcoming and to truly feel like home,” Bloom said. “By doing community service we invest ourselves in something that we otherwise might never even think about and make the experience more ‘home-y.’”


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