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The North Wind

The North Wind

The North Wind

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Hi! My name is Lily Gouin I am in my third year here at NMU. I am from Appleton, WI majoring in communications and double minoring in multimedia journalism and public relations. In my free time, I like...

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Dallas WiertellaApril 30, 2024

Student Nurses Association hosts Socktober to give back to community

Rachel Pott
SOCK DRIVE — Socktober donation boxes like these can be found throughout campus, including the Lydia M. Olson Library, The Science Building, Weston Hall, residence hall lobbies and the Northern Center.

As the leaves begin to fall and temperatures begin to drop, people are starting to prepare for the colder weather. One preparation includes the Socktober sock drive, hosted by the Student Nurses Association (SNA). During the month of October, boxes will be located across campus where students, faculty and community members are able to donate socks. 

“We are asking for new socks to be donated. Then, we will donate the socks that we collect to the Janzen House to help supply the need for socks in our community,” said Emilee Kelly, vice president of the Student Nurses Association and chair of Socktober. 

The Janzen House helps provide support and resources for those experiencing homelessness and housing crises. They also help to secure employment and long-term housing for their residents. The Janzen House accepts donations and will always take socks, shoes, t-shirts and blue jeans. 

Socktober was started in 2018 and was recently restarted after having been disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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SNA felt this was an important event and decided to bring it back after the pandemic.

“We do this to fill the need in the community. We are obviously all going into the healthcare field and want to make a difference. This gives us a way to give back to the community,” Kelly said. 

While socks might seem like such a small and inconsequential item for some, they are incredibly important – especially in the colder months.

“Not wearing socks can cause foot ulcers and hypothermia, and you can get injuries on your toes, so having socks can really help with that,” Kelly said. “It also benefits the overall health of the individuals that are receiving the socks because their feet are more protected.”

In Marquette and Alger counties, there are about 9 unhoused individuals per 10,000 people in the general population, according to the National Alliance to End Homelessness. This is compared to 8 unhoused individuals per 10,000 people in the state of Michigan as a whole. 

While all socks are greatly appreciated, Kelly does recommend donating some specific types of socks for those who can.

“Really any socks are great, but since we do live in the U.P., warmer socks are best because of how cold it can get here,” Kelly said. 

Last year, SNA collected and donated 150 pairs of socks. Kelly said they hope to reach over 100 pairs of socks again this year. 

For those who are unable to go out and buy socks, they can donate money to SNA. The organization will then purchase socks with the donations they collect that way. 

In addition to the Socktober drive, SNA will be hosting a charity ball next semester, with proceeds going to a specific charity. Students in SNA partake in many events that give back to the community, like making blankets for shelters and holiday cards for nursing homes.

“It gives a way for nursing students to give back to the community, but to also be involved with other nursing students to build a community,” Kelly said. 

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About the Contributor
Rachel Pott
Rachel Pott, News Writer
I am a marketing major about to start my second year at Northern Michigan University, however, this will be my third year in college. I previously attended a small community college near my hometown, Charlevoix, Mi. In high school, I was a part of my school’s journalism program and helped to produce bi-weekly student newspapers. In my free time, I enjoy outdoor activities like skiing, boating, fishing, and biking. I also love to work out, read, paint, and bake.