JSCC Star Tree helps students in financial need

JACKSON, Tenn. — Jackson State Community College is getting in the holiday spirit, including a special decoration just for students.

The Star Tree has become a part of the Christmas tradition at Jackson State over the last three years, helping students with children get presents during the holidays.

“Toys, clothes, books, those kinds of things, just to make sure that students who may be struggling a bit financially can have a great holiday season for their young children at home,” said Brian Gann, Vice President of Student Services at JSCC.

Each tag on the tree includes the child’s age, gender and a few of their favorite things, like toys and books.

The tree started with around 84 tags. Wednesday morning, there were only 13 left because students have responded in a big way.

“They all came out on the Tuesday before Black Friday, so many were gone in the couple days before Thanksgiving. Gifts are already starting to come in, so it’s a fast turnaround,” Gann said.

With donations coming in from both students and employees, Gann says the tree helps to form a sense of family among those students who have children on the tree.

“It has just been well embraced by our campus community, and we’re just so appreciative of everybody just to give at this time of year. It goes quickly. We’ll never have a tag not filled. We’ll always be able to fulfill everyone that we offer,” Gann said.

Only students and Jackson State employees can participate in the Star Tree program. Those who choose to participate are asked to bring their gifts to the front desk inside the Student Center.

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