Something to Think About
SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT
Steve Sauder is president of Emporia's Radio Stations, Inc. the owners of KVOE-AM 1400, Country 101.7 and Mix 104.9. Steve has been in a leadership position with ERS, Inc., since 1987.
SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT
Kent Weiser – February 17, 2016
As you might expect, today’s topic revolves around intercollegiate athletics. It is not about wins or losses, scheduling games, or officiating. It is about a topic that that has drawn attention at college campuses around the country. It is not about political correctness, but rather, it is about the role athletics plays in diversity, equity, and inclusion.
By its nature, athletics has advantages as we address diversity, and at almost all levels, sports are ahead of society when it comes to equity. Historically, racial barriers are broken in athletics before other areas. Athletics in its best form is the most level playing field there is…where people are judged and valued by their abilities, and by the content of their character.
Emporia State student-athletes, and those on any organized team, come together with the hope of reaching a common goal. They must trust each other, treat each other with respect, and depend on each other, regardless of their teammate’s ethnicity or background. When athletes focus on a common goal, individual differences become much less important. Every day, I see that dependability, trust, mutual respect, and dedication are found in people of all races and cultures.
Athletics though, does face their own generalizations and stereotypes. We hear of individual instances that perpetuate the stereotype of student-athletes being dumb jocks, that they are arrogant, and don’t care about education. So how do we make people realize that these are generalizations, and do not apply to the majority of student-athletes?
At ESU, we have chosen to address these pre-conceived stereotypes by being involved in various community service projects. Not to specifically alleviate the stereotypes of student-athletes, but to simply help people and causes that are in need. When we do that, people get to know student-athletes for who they are as individuals, not by the group they belong to. Stereotypes are slowly broken down, and pre-conceived generalizations fade away.
Emporia State student-athletes take the opportunity to help those in need in our community in a variety of ways. From reading to elementary school students, helping senior citizens, volunteering for Habitat for Humanity, collecting food for our local food banks, and building dog houses for our four-legged friends at the Humane Society, just to name a few.
I would like to see other groups and individuals in Emporia, and in the world for that matter, take this same approach….to lend a hand to someone else and get to know them, and they get to know you. Imagine if our international students helped with Walk for Hunger to fill our food banks. If the student Christian organizations helped our Islamic students observe Ramadan, and celebrate Eid. If our black student union helped the Hispanic community celebrate Cinco de Mayo. If our Muslim students helped our senior citizens with Christmas events. If our fraternities and sororities helped African American students recognize Black History month. The possibilities exist everywhere…not to forward any one group’s agenda, but to help others reach their goals. If you first seek to understand, you will be understood.
For this to work as it has for ESU Athletics, groups and individuals must have the courage to get out of their comfort zone, and be the first to extend their hand in friendship and support. How about that someone be you.
I’m Kent Weiser, and that’s something to think about.
Something to think about! - Shirley Antes - Director of Emporia Community Foundation
I’ve got something for you to think about – “Keep 5 in Kansas”!
That’s right – “Keep 5 in Kansas”!
It’s a campaign. It’s an opportunity. It’s a way of leaving a legacy. It’s all of these things AND it’s something to think about.
Now more than ever, we have an opportunity to ensure our cities, towns and counties remain great places to live for future generations. The “Keep 5 in Kansas” campaign highlights the unprecedented transfer of wealth that will occur in the next 40 years as estates change hands from the Greatest Generation to the Baby Boomers, and then to their children and grandchildren. In Kansas, this transfer of wealth is estimated to be $79 billion by 2020. By 2064 it will increase to nearly $600 billion! For Lyon County alone this transfer of wealth equals $845 million by 2020 and by 2064 $6.5 billion.
So, how can we keep a portion of the transfer of wealth in Kansas and more importantly in our own communities? The “Keep 5 in Kansas” campaign asks every Kansan to consider designating a portion of their estate wealth – even 5% -- by setting up an endowment through their local community foundation. By doing this, we could provide a permanent source of funding for local organizations and charitable causes that will greatly improve the lives of future generations.
So, think about what matters to you. What are the causes you care about? What would you do to make sure the things that matter to you today have a secure future, long after you’re gone? How can you help ensure that future generations will benefit from the wonderful resources we have in our community? There are many options for establishing an endowment and with a little planning, we can all make a difference for our communities, our families, our friends and our neighbors, forever.
Now that’s -- Something to think about!
For more information, visit the “Keep 5 in Kansas” website at keepfiveinkansas.com or call the Emporia Community Foundation at 342-9304.
As I prepare for my maiden voyage as author of “Something to Think About,” I reflect on the weekend I just experienced here in our hometown of Emporia, KS. Friday night, the Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce celebrated and honored many great leaders throughout the community. These individuals pour their hearts and souls into our community to make it a quality place to live and work.
With many deserving people and businesses, the recognition shared Friday night was nothing short of inspiring. These are the folks that make Emporia one of a kind. I would like to personally thank the following leaders who make a difference right here in Emporia; Steve Brosemer of EASCAR as Committee of the year, the great people of ValuNet as Business of the Year, George and Gail Milton who received the Tourism Award, Carolyn Risley as Volunteer of the year, and Mr. John Mallon who earned the Lifetime Achievement Award. I tip my hat to Rich Avery for a job well done in 2015 as Chair of the board and I have all the confidence in the world in Pete Euler who will lead our Chamber to many successes in 2016.
As I reflect on this evening, I am reminded of how fortunate we are to have so many different personalities working together to make this a special place where quality of life is far from lost. It was only a few weeks ago, action was taken by the City Commission and County Commission to support Emporia State University and the kids of our community through scholarships. This action speaks volumes to the environment our elected leaders strive to create. With the many uncertainties in life, it is difficult to put into words the value of being surrounded by friends and neighbors.
I can say without reservation that Emporia is a great place to follow your dreams, a great place to raise a family, and a great place to call home!
I’m Shane Shivley and that is something to think about.