Combining friendship with service

Every year, APO members donate some 6,000 hours to community service initiatives on and off campus.
Alpha Phi Omega

Since best friends MacKenzie Sample, Nan Zhao, Michael Liu and Victoria Wang joined Alpha Phi Omega (APO), the national service fraternity, membership at Washington University has tripled. Could there be a causal relationship?

“We would never say that,” said Wang, with a laugh. “What makes our brotherhood strong is that APO is more than a service organization. We build relationships with each other through our service projects.”

Here, this team of senior uber-volunteers shares more about their favorite projects:

Energy Care:

“We helped insulate low-income houses by sealing windows with a plastic seal. It allowed us to go into the homes of people who had asked for help and get to know them. As we were leaving, the owner of one house let us know how grateful and excited he was for the improvements done to his house.”
— MacKenzie Sample, psychology in Arts & Sciences

Missouri River Relief:

“We get up early on a Saturday, drive over to the river and spend a few hours picking up trash. Sometimes we even ride in boats to the cleanup sites. It’s really satisfying seeing how many trash bags we fill.”
— Nan Zhao, biology and philosophy–neuroscience–psychology in Arts & Sciences

Dance Marathon and Relay For Life:

“It’s wonderful to be a part of something that involves the entire campus and benefits patients and their families in the surrounding community and the nation as a whole.”
— Michael Liu, computer science in the School of Engineering & Applied Science

Hope Lodge:

“We make dinner and just sit with people who are going through cancer treatments. I remember this elderly married couple who was so appreciative of the company because the only people they would see every day were doctors. Experiences like this help me realize I can make an impact right now.”
— Victoria Wang, biomedical engineering in the School Engineering & Applied Science.


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