WNP Student Chapter coming to UWSP coming next semester
By Taylor J. Hale
Special to the Gazette
STEVENS POINT — Katelin Bridgman is spearheading the development of a University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (UWSP) Wisconsin-Nicaragua Partners of the Americas (WNP) student chapter, coming to the campus next semester.
Bridgman is a UWSP student studying sociology and an active member in the WNP. The student organization will assist with everything from shipping logistics to the preparation of gatherings, and much more.
“Programs like this give people an opportunity to network together and share ideas,” Bridgman said in an interview about the student group. “Involving university students is going to be really important to increase the longevity of the organization, and also in increasing the capacity in which we can serve Nicaragua and the Stevens Point community.”
The group will be the first student ran WNP organization in the state and Executive Director of the parent program Amy Wiza is excited to see the youth get involved in international activities.
“The student organization would bring in more young people with energy, and we need that,” Wiza explained. “There is a huge population of students who want to be involved with international happenings, and we can be a conduit for that.”
The new program will be available to UWSP students this January. Bridgman’s internship with the program sprouted from her ardent enthusiasm for giving back. She feels the student organization will encourage her peers to find a zeal for aiding others.
“Things like this can help a student find a passion they didn’t even know they had,” Bridgman said.
The WNP Student Chapter will be distributing promotional material to generate interest in volunteerism and the group in the coming weeks. Bridgman believes that broadcasting the announcement is crucial before the start of next semester.
“Not a lot of students know about the organization, unfortunately, even though it’s located right on campus,” Bridgman explained. “I didn’t even know about it until one of my professors recommended it to me, and I am very active in helping with groups and community engagement.”
Bridgman and Wiza gained knowledge and traction for the student group after they attended a WNP meeting in Texas in early December. The two are now preparing for future events. Weekly meetings and programs are a possibility for the group, but there is currently no set schedule.
“Things are all still in the works, but we want students to be able to participate as much as they want,” Bridgman said. “It gives students a great way to get involved and volunteer in international relations, which is a very valuable opportunity.”
For more info on WNP projects visit their website at http://wisnic.org.