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In an effort to promote early childhood literacy, Kent State University has teamed up with the United Way of Portage County on the Big Red Bookshelf project.

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Kent State Salem Staff and Students Host Banquet in Salem

Posted April 14, 2014
enter photo description
Members of the Kent State University at Salem community
serve meals at the Banquet in Salem, a free dinner event
for area residents.

Students, faculty and staff from Kent State University at Salem recently sponsored the Banquet in Salem, a free dinner for area residents, and served more than 215 meals in just a few hours.

The menu included chicken and biscuits, meatball vegetable soup, tossed salad, baked apples, fresh fruit, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, sheet cake, chips and drinks.

The nursing and radiology programs helped drive the effort, collecting donations of money and food items from campus employees and students. KFC in Salem donated 300 biscuits for the dinner. Staff and students also volunteered by preparing food, decorating, serving meals, bussing tables and washing dishes.

Organizers are already beginning to plan the next sponsored dinner, which will take place in the fall.

“This is so much work, and we’re all tired. But it’s worth every ache to see how much people appreciate it,” one volunteer says.

Guests to the dinner range in age from young children to senior citizens.

“We always look forward to the night Kent State fixes the dinner because we know it’s going to be delicious!” says a guest at the banquet.

For more information about Kent State University at Salem, visit