The Help an Elf drop off and pickup location is in the Morgan University Center Room 208. Photo by Anabelle Coker | THE ALL STATE

With the passing of Thanksgiving brings the spirit of Christmas. Though Christmas is only days away, for some at Austin Peay State University, the giving season began long before.

For those that are unaware, the Division of Student Affairs at APSU organizes the annual Help an Elf Holiday Gift Program that is designed to assist income eligible full-time APSU student parents with holiday shopping for their children.

Help an Elf is celebrating its 29th year at APSU with applications for this year opening as early as October, accepting a total of 60 children to be gifted through the program this Christmas.

“I look forward to Help an Elf every year, and I am definitely looking forward to celebrating the 30th year anniversary of the program next year. The Student Affairs staff and our adopters are so grateful to have the opportunity to support our student families in this way. It is such a joyous opportunity,” said Dr. Tammy Brant, director of Student Affairs Programs and Assessment. 

The families that are accepted into the program each year have the opportunity to receive special holiday gifts for their children through adoption by an APSU organization, department, individual staff, faculty, student or alum.

“I think it means something different to every family,” said Dr. Bryant.

Throughout the last 29 years with the program, over 1,200 children have been supported by the APSU community. 

“For those who adopt families each year, it gives them a great sense of joy and what we hope to do is to express the caring that we feel for the students on our campus,” said Dr. Bryant.

Robin White, an APSU alum, has been participating in the Help an Elf program since before she graduated in 2008.

“I visit campus once a year now to drop off shiny gifts wrapped up but also to pass on a whispered shout of encouragement and pride to these parents—they truly are inspirational and I hope they feel that fully through this program,” said White.

If you would like to contribute to the spread of holiday cheer, but are not able to adopt a family, Student Affairs also accepts monetary and material donations. To make a contribution, call Student Affairs Programs at (931) 221-6570 or (931) 221-6258.