BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The SEC sponsors Community Service Teams for all 21 league sponsored sports. The Community Service Team looks to highlight an athlete from each school who gives back to their community in superior service efforts. The 10th annual women’s volleyball Community Service Team follows:
Clarissa Pavey, Senior, Defensive Specialist, Arkansas
Clarissa Pavey participates in several projects and programs as part of the University of Arkansas’ outreach efforts to local elementary schools. She was part of the Razorbacks’ Sweat Hawgs at Happy Hollow Elementary School to promote the program’s message of physical education and healthy eating habits. Pavey also volunteered with Happy Hollow, helping out in the classroom of kindergarten students. Additionally, she has been active in Boys & Girls Club clinics, the Girl Scout Fun Olympics and MLK Kid’s Day. Pavey was also part of Lift Up America in which more than 75 Razorback student-athletes and coaches helped distribute more than 30,000 pounds of food to the Northwest Arkansas Food Bank.
Sarah Wroblicky, Senior, Libero, Auburn
Wroblicky’s community service projects include working with the Salvation Army, participating in Toys for Tots and the Beat Bama Food Drive, volunteering with the Boys & Girls Club of Lee County, participating in teacher education observation and serving as a conversation partner with international students. Wroblicky is a three-year selection to SEC Academic Honor Roll and was named an Academic Top Tiger three straight years. She earned “100 percent” award for volleyball as a sophomore.
Madison Monserez, Junior, Defensive Specialist, Florida
Gator volleyball player Madison Monserez has led the University of Florida’s community service efforts throughout the fall semester, accumulating the most volunteer hours of the volleyball squad, indicating Florida’s emphasis not only on academics and athletics, but in the local community. Through UF’s Office of Student Life and the Goodwill Gators program, Monserez has participated in seven community service activities throughout the year so far, including three Shands Infusion Room visits at Gainesville’s local hospital, UF Health. Monserez also participated in a Caleb’s Pitch Syringe Art session, where she spent time with UF Health patients filling medicine syringes with paint to squirt all over a canvas, help creating a memento of a positive experience in the hospital for young children through art. The Gator junior has also volunteered her time at St. Francis House, serving the homeless of Gainesville and she – along with the entire Gator volleyball team – volunteered at UF’s annual Climb for Cancer event, where Gator student-athletes organize and play in sports-related events with children fighting various forms of cancer. One of Florida’s defensive specialists, Monserez also attended a UF Career Resource Center speaking event at the beginning of November.
Gaby Smiley, Junior, Defensive Specialist/Libero, Georgia
Community Service Projects: worked with St. Vincent De Paul Society by helping package clothes and organize food into bind that were then taken to families and organizations that helped families that were in need; helped organize a Relay for Life event that raised money and awareness for the American Cancer Society; volunteered to coach kids and run a camp for kids who wanted to play volleyball as part of the Northview Volleyball Camp; worked with the Children’s Restoration Network by spending time shopping for items on the Christmas lists of children in need, wrapping the gifts and deliver the gifts to the families on Christmas; volunteered with Meals on Wheels by delivering meals to government funded homes around Athens for families and individuals who do not have the money for food or are unable to cook for themselves; helped cook and package meals for Campus Kitchen that were sent to local Athens families who do not have the money for food; served food to those in need at the Atlanta Homeless Shelter; volunteered with NEDA Walk, an organization that walks to raise awareness for eating disorders; volunteered for Home Runs for Hometown Rivals events, which benefits the Athens Clarke County Special Olympics, by being paired with a Special Olympic Athlete and helping the compete during the game; volunteered with the UGA volleyball team at the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia; volunteered at a local elementary school by walking kids to class after their parents dropped them off to help start their day on a good note.
Jessi Greenberg, Senior, Defensive Specialist, Kentucky
Greenberg’s community service projects include working with Boys and Girls Club, Salvation Army, Read Across America, God’s Pantry and Fayette County Walk-a-Child-to-School program. She was a Hope Lodge volunteer, a camp counselor at various UK volleyball camps and helped develop and executed a marketing plan for Coach Calipari’s Charity Challenge. Greenberg volunteered as a counselor and coach for the Southern Middle School cross country team and served as a volunteer as a leader at the Woodhill Neighborhood after school program. She is a three-time All-SEC Academic team member and has interned with UK Media Relations, IMG, CoachCal.com, AVCA and Careerathletes.com.
Madi Mahaffey, Junior, Middle Blocker/Right Side Hitter, LSU
Mahaffey has been involved with numerous community service efforts. She works very closely with the Companion Animal Alliance, Friends of the Animals Baton Rouge and Pets Against Shelter Surrender (PASS) over the last year. Mahaffey has been a foster parent and cared for eight dogs during the past year while the animals wait for adoption. The dogs stay with her ranging from a few days to a few weeks. After the season is over, Mahaffey is going to spend her spring volunteering with the Friends of the Animals Baton Rouge. Other service projects Mahaffey has been involved with include Camp Tiger, a summer camp put on by the LSU Med School for special needs kids. She also was involved with move-in day where every LSU athletic team helped the 2013 freshmen class move into their dorms. Mahaffey and her teammates have been frequent visitors to Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital where they go room-to-room visiting hospital patients and their families to cheer them up with autographed posters. LSU volleyball played host to the athletic department’s “Halloween BOOzar” where kids from all over Baton Rouge were provided with a safe trick-or-treat experience. As part of “Thanksgiving with the Tigers,” the volleyball team adopted an underprivileged child for the holidays. The Tigers provided the child with gifts at a special program, while serving a Thanksgiving style meal.
Rachael McLamore, Junior, Defensive Specialist, Ole Miss
McLamore’s community service projects include coaching sand volleyball clinics for elementary school kids on Sundays all summer long, participating in Adopt a Basket Thanksgiving fundraiser, working with Operation Christmas Child where she would fill shoeboxes with non-perishable items to be sent all over the world to kids in need for Christmas, volunteering at More Than a Meal in Oxford where she would help others and cook food for those in need, participating in the Books and Bears Christmas fundraiser, working with Love Packs as part of a SAAC fundraiser, volunteering with Habitat for Humanity in Oxford, coaching in seven FCA volleyball camps throughout the summer, serving as a volleyball coach at a southern California foster child sports fair and volunteering at the First Baptist Church Double Decker Weekend event.
Ellen Stuart, Sophomore, Defensive Specialist, Mississippi State
Community Service Projects: Miracle League handicap baseball volunteer … STM LifeTeen Senior Retreat volunteer … Steubenville Mid-American Young Adult Leader for high schoolers … Breakfast of Champions reading program for Starkville area elementary schools … Oprah’s Children’s Home Volleyball Clinic volunteer … PineLake Christian Kids Camp volunteer … Mississippi State YoungLife leader and founder … Bully’s Book Blitz for Starkville-area youth … Zeta Tau Alpha Valentine’s Day community Valentines project … Fundraising for YoungLife Mission trips.
Lisa Henning, Senior, Outside Hitter, Missouri
Henning’s community service projects include participating in the Mizzou volleyball elementary youth leagues as she taught before-school volleyball classes to local elementary-age children once a week for two months, visiting the MU Children’s Hospital to visit and play and interact with sick children, participating in a free youth clinic to teach volleyball to young children and participating in a Columbia Mall Meet-and-Greet in conjunction with MU Children’s Hospital. Henning continually visited local retirement communities such as Boone Landing and Lenoir Retirement Homes and played with children at Going Bonkers, a local business in Columbia. She helped throw a beach party for local children at Wilson’s Pool and gave children free volleyball lessons at the pool in addition to working with the local area Girl Scouts program. Henning has also reached out to college students at a Campus View Volleyball Tournament.
Sarah Blomgren, Sophomore, Right Side/Outside Hitter, South Carolina
Blomgren’s community service projects include working with Harvest Hope Food Bank and participating in a food drive at the State Fairgrounds, assisting the University of South Carolina Campus Wellness Center by helping people register. She handled their payments and directed them to their proper station. Blomgren has also painted nails, did hair and makeup and made jewelry for the women at Babcock Center, ran drills and played games with Special Olympics athletes, planted a garden with University of South Carolina First Lady Patricia Moore-Pastides at Carver Lyon Elementary School and handed out candy to kids that were trick or treating at the zoo at Boo at the Zoo. She is a member of the 2013 SEC First-Year Academic Honor Roll.
Ashlyn Sunseri, Sophomore, Outside Hitter, Tennessee
Sunseri is highly involved in the Knoxville community, participating in many events throughout the year. The sophomore volunteers regularly at the Children’s Hospital, making visits and passing out toys. Sunseri helped out at Let’s Move Day, an initiative in Knoxville that promotes physical activity for youths and encourages healthy eating, where she led kids at a local park in activities outdoors. Sunseri, along with the entire volleyball team, attended the local high school for the deaf, where they cheered on the team and answered questions about playing volleyball afterwards. This past October, the sophomore outside hitter participated in Tennessee’s second annual VOLoween, a university event hosted by UT student-athletes who lead games and pass out candy for University employee families and children. Sunseri is a member of SAAC, Athletes in Action and the Dean’s List, where she currently has a 3.82 GPA. She was named an SEC Academic All-American last season.
Angela Lowak, Sophomore, Outside Hitter, Texas A&M
Angela Lowak utilizes her membership in several service organizations as a platform to volunteer at an array of service projects that have benefitted communities on both a local and national scale, as well as at the international level. The sophomore outside hitter volunteers each year at Aggie Residence Hall Move-In Day, welcoming and assisting new and returning Aggies move into their dorms. The volleyball team representative on the Student Athlete Advisory Committee, Lowak also volunteers at Film on the Field, a SAAC-sponsored annual event held to unify the student-athletes with the student body and members of the community. As a member of the Business Honors program at Texas A&M, Lowak has volunteered at the Brazos Valley Food Bank, where she helps sort items and pack family boxes. Also a member of Pi Beta Phi, Lowak is active in the sorority’s philanthropic endeavors for literacy, assisting local citizens to become more proficient in English at the Barbara Bush Parent Center. She also helps organize and also coaches a team at the sorority’s annual “Dodge The Arrow,” dodge ball tournament, which raises funds to provide books to children in need. During the off-season, Lowak and other FCA members interact with local elementary school children during their physical education classes, teaching them the importance of being physically active and setting an example for good sportsmanship and team work. Lowak also participated in a three-week Campus Crusades event in which she cleaned roads and picked up litter in Breckenridge, Colo., and this past summer, she raised her own funds and went on a 12-day trip with Adventures and Missions to AIDS-stricken Swaziland, where she volunteer at the hospital, helped with playground improvement projects and taught Bible study sessions.