Over a year after its conception, the Union University Exchange Club was formally chartered at a ceremony on Union’s campus this month.
The student-run club is now officially recognized as a collegiate chapter of the National Exchange Club, a service organization which promotes family, community and Americanism.
In attendance were some prominent members of the Jackson and the Exchange Club communities, including Phil Howard, the national president-elect, Tawnya Moore, district president and Wayne Tucker, the regional vice-president.
The ceremony began with the Pledge of Allegiance, followed by a brief statement from Chris Ramey, a former president of the Jackson Exchange Club who has served as the Union chapter’s liaison for the past year.
Ramey then introduced Ken Roberts, an Exchange Club member since 1977 who served as the national president of the Exchange Club for the 2001-2002 term. Roberts spoke on topics such as motivation, loyalty and investment.
“You get out of something what you’re willing to put into it,” Roberts said.
The ceremony then continued with Roberts at the helm, guiding the inductees through the process of adopting members and bylaws, as well as formally inducting the students with the Exchange Club’s service oath.
The Union University Exchange Club’s board of directors was also appointed, consisting of students Clark Hubbard, Matthew Grove and Kaylyn Thigpen.
The officers were sworn in immediately after: Thomas Wilson as president, Alex Herman as president-elect, Eddie Echeverria as treasurer, and Anna Minchey as secretary.
Howard offered words of inspiration as the ceremony came to a close, encouraging the newly inducted Exchange Club to be excited for the impact they may bring to Jackson.
“The best members are the new ones because they are the most excited,” Howard said.
All new members of the Union University Exchange Club received pins commemorating their standing as charter members. Any who join the club in the upcoming weeks may be eligible for charter member status.
The club plans on bringing back its fish-racing extravaganza, the Fishy500, which was held on campus last spring. Other fundraisers and outreaches to support the Carl Perkins Center in the coming months are in the works.