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Rider Students Spread Holiday Cheer to Troops

On Dec. 14, about 30 students socialized over pizza and created 47 holiday greeting cards for Operation Gratitude, a nonprofit that sends more than 100,000 care packages to the armed forces annually.

Editor's Note: The following is a news release issued by Rider University.

Recently, students in Rider University's Leadership Development Program (LDP) took a break from studying and writing papers to spread some holiday cheer and express their gratitude to troops stationed overseas.

On Dec. 14, about 30 students socialized over pizza and created 47 holiday greeting cards for Operation Gratitude, a nonprofit that sends more than 100,000 care packages to the armed forces annually.  

Laura Seplaki, director of LDP, said the program received a $100 gift card to Varsity Pizza, after it had the best turnout of participants in the Counseling Center's Stomp Out Stigma Walk/Run earlier in the semester. Seplaki said she wanted the occasion to be more than a pizza party, so she asked CDLS graduate assistant Elizabeth Williams to come up with a service component.  

"Servant leadership is a critical part to being a great leader, and service to others must be something that as leaders we continuously strive to do each and every day, both in our professional and personal lives," Williams explained.

"An attitude of service is often derived from an attitude of gratitude, and so being impressed with Operation Gratitude's mission and accomplishments, I thought it would be great for the students to contribute appreciation cards to their care packages that are sent to the men and women serving overseas."

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