Pushing for Advocacy: Tim Cywinski’s Journey for PUSH America

Tim Cywinksi who is originally from Northern Virginia, came to Roanoke to study political science. However, while Tim is involved in the classroom, he is also making an impact in the college community as well. In fact, Tim’s commitment to his fraternity Pi Kappa Phi and its philanthropy has been recognized by more than just students on campus.

Tim shares that he joined Pi Kapp the second semester of his first year at Roanoke. He decided to join because he felt that the chapter possessed a strong sense of brotherhood. As a first year student he wanted to join an organization that would support him and allow him the chance to do the same for others. Through the fraternity’s philanthropic efforts, Tim was also able to become more involved in one of the fraternity’s key pillars: service.

Pi Kappa Phi is a truly unique organization in the sense that they are the only fraternity that owns and operates its own philanthropy. PUSH America is dedicated to supporting the developmentally challenged community through construction of handicap accessible structures, aiding education programs, and building awareness of the capabilities of those who are developmentally challenged. For years, the Xi chapter (Roanoke College’s charter) has been very successful in terms of fundraising and awareness for PUSH. After nearly two years in the organization, Tim was elected PUSH chairman. Tim contributes that his knowledge in the classroom helped him to succeed in this position. He felt that some of the information that he learned in his classes related on the global scale, but he wanted to bring his tools and knowledge to problems on the domestic front.

Tim Cywinski being pied during Pie a Pi Kapp by Area Coordinator Kristen Pearson
Tim Cywinski being pied during Pie a Pi Kapp by Area Coordinator Kristen Pearson

As PUSH chairman Tim was responsible primarily for the planning and execution of the fraternity’s philanthropy week at Roanoke College, where the fraternity raised over $2,000 for PUSH America. Just last month, Pi Kappa Phi named Tim PUSH chair of the year. The award is a testament to all the hard work the brotherhood put into solidifying its commitment to serving others.

However, Tim shared that he would not have been able to be as successful without the support from the campus community. Cywinski remarked, “One undeniable fact of Roanoke College as well as its Pi Kapp chapter is that hard work will be rewarded. It sounds cliché, but when I have set my mind on accomplishing something, this school, and my fraternity have helped me do so.” Tim is set to graduate in December of 2014, but in the meantime he is researching graduate schools where can pursue a masters degree in global affairs. When I had asked any other future plans, such as working for a non-profit he joked and said, “I’d love to! Unfortunately, I suffer the same plight as many other students when it comes to student debt. So it’s more likely I will seek out a better paying job first.”

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