PTK students help make a difference

Joe Jacquez
Mesa Legend

JoeJacquez_picMCC has always been known for giving back to the local community through service, and this year one organization is doing its part to help expand and take that legacy to a whole new level. This year, Phi Theta Kappa Omicron Beta, the official two-year honors society on campus is once again partnering with Special Olympics Arizona, an organization they have been involved in for many years. Last year the chapter didn’t participate with Special Olympics, and Kinsey Noe wants to make sure the chapter was not only involved this year, but that they were heavily involved.  “This year we are becoming even more involved,” Noe said. “We have been honored to help host many of their events, including one of the most recent ones, bocce ball.”

Photo by Tania Ritko/Mesa Legend

This semester Noe has been working closely with the Palo Verde area which currently serves the western metropolitan Phoenix communities of Avondale, Glendale, Goodyear, Peoria, Phoenix, Surprise, and of course, the East Valley. Palo Verde director Jaime Heckerman reiterated a concept that most already know: Special Olympic events are a huge part of the athlete’s lives. “Extremely important,” Heckerman said. “Through Special Olympics events we are able to provide socialization to those that may not get it in their everyday lives.” “We also provide training and competition opportunities to all those who wish to participate, regardless of their ability.” This is part of the reason Noe and the rest of the Omicron Beta team want to make sure they are heavily involved this year.  “I wanted to make sure we were more involved this year so that we could establish that relationship with them again,” Noe said.  Heckerman certainly appreciates PTK’s major involvement with his events. “MCC and Phi Theta Kappa provide volunteers on a large scale to our events to make the events possible for our athletes,” Heckerman said.

ptk_key_rgb-146x260“MCC works well with our athletes and is able to provide a significant number of volunteers who want to be there for our athletes. “They want to witness the athlete’s ability and joy.” Noe loves helping with Special Olympics, but not because she can make an impact on the athletes.  “It feels great to make an impact on the athletes involved with Special Olympics, but I think most people would agree that they make more of an impact on you than you might in them,” Noe said. “For me personally, I love being involved with Special Olympics because of the athletes and all the different personalities that you get to work with. It’s almost always guaranteed that anytime I go to an event I’m going to meet someone that has a personality just like me and it makes the event so enjoyable for me.”

Noe encouraged students to get involved with Special Olympics even if it is for a little time; it’s all worth it in her mind.  “I know that every time I go to an event, the athletes, coaches, and even parents are always grateful to have volunteers there to help out.  “Volunteers always help the events run smoother. And the more volunteers there are the better. ”If that isn’t enough to get involved than who knows what is. For more information on how to volunteer, contact Noe at



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These are archived stories from Mesa Legend editions before Fall 2018. See article for corresponding author.

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