Still time to help School is Cool help PSD students start the year right

Colorado State University’s signature program that provides K-12 students in need in the Poudre School District with the tools for success kicks into high gear the first full week in August, and there are plenty of ways for CSU employees to be part of the effort.

While all the time slots for stuffing grade-appropriate school supplies into backpacks on Wednesday, Aug. 4, have been filled, volunteers are still needed to organize the mountains of donated supplies on Tuesday so they are ready for the assembly line to begin so all 2,800 backpacks can be stuffed by the end of the day.

Help is also needed to load the backpacks on buses and deliver them to schools throughout Fort Collins on Thursday. Sign up at the School is Cool registration link.

“School is Cool is a massive effort that really makes a difference to kids in our community, and we just could not do it without all the dedicated CSU employees who give their time every summer,” said Colleen Rodriguez, co-chair of the School is Cool organizing committee.

Growing need

Backpacks At School Is Cool

Volunteers are ready to stuff 2,800 backpacks for School is Cool.

The need for supplies grows every year, and School is Cool has grown as well, to help equip as many students as possible for a successful school year.

“This is the 30th year that CSU has been giving back through School is Cool, and every year it seems the logistics of making sure the supplies get to the students who need them get a little more complex,” said Connie Schimmels, who co-chairs the School is Cool effort with Rodriguez.  “I am simply amazed by how many people are happy to pitch in wherever we need help to make it a success.”

In addition to the all-volunteer assembly and delivery process, enormous amounts of effort go into securing donations that support School is Cool. The program is sponsored by the CSU Bookstore and the Bohemian Foundation, with major support coming from individual donors – faculty, staff, alumni, students and members of the community.

The need for donations has grown along with everything else, thanks in part to the rising cost and decreased availability of quality supplies in the wake of pandemic supply-chain disruptions. Thanks to the savvy purchasing by John Parry, director of the Bookstore, a $25 donation still buys a backpack and everything that goes into it.

Donate online at the School is Cool link on the University Advancement webpage.