JRNM 151 Student
A familiar scene at Lorain County Community College’s Starbucks is the weekly Gathering of the Coalition for Christian Outreach. Students going to get their coffee will see members of the CCO hosting a poll on the main table, playing board games, or just hanging out with one another between classes. While they have stickers and events on campus, CCO has not been an official campus club since their start in fall of 2016. That is all about to change since their status as an official campus club is coming up to a vote on May 3 at 2 p.m. in a student senate meeting.
Emily Bingham, a campus minister employed by the CCO to help serve at LCCC, has been involved with the various events CCO hosts. She says being a club will allow CCO certain privileges, but “more importantly, it’s also meaningful for us on a symbolic level”. Bingham encourages all students to attend, noting that there will be free coffee and snacks provided by the student senate. She hopes that CCO will be voted in as an official organization so that it can “be an active and positive presence at LCCC for many years to come”.
While the CCO hasn’t been given full club status on LCCC’s campus yet, it is a branch of a national organization that reaches colleges nationwide. It is a non-profit organization founded in the 1970’s and has a presence in one hundred and forty college campuses across the nation. Their biggest event is their Jubilee held February of each year. A three-day conference that boasts an audience of up to four thousand college students from various chapters.
Trinity Harrison-Clark, a worker for CCO who has been involved with LCCC’s chapter, says, “Being an official club will allow us to be more integrated into the student body on campus”. Harrison-Clark says that becoming official will give CCO access to facilities and funds it doesn’t currently have, and “give our students a real sense of being involved in student life at LCCC”. She stressed that one of the main goals for CCO is to give students leadership skills and helping them integrate their faith with their studies.
The Gathering at Starbucks isn’t the only activity they hold on campus, as they also host two bible studies on Wednesdays and Fridays in the afternoon. There is a dinner they host twice a month called The Table, which Bingham says is “specifically designed for people who have never felt fully at home in traditional church services”. Bingham listed other activities they had done which included “a movie night, Olympics party, bonfire, and Christmas party.” They also took part in hurricane relief this year in Houston, Texas.