COLLEGE STATION, Texas — The winter storm that blew through Texas affected nearly everyone in the state, including college students. Two Texas universities have put aside their school rivalry and work together to help students in need.
Student leaders from Texas A&M University and the University of Texas at Austin have created the fundraising campaign, Maroon and Orange: Texas Tough. Donations from the campaign will benefit students who have to repair damage to their housing, replace groceries, pay high bills and more, courtesy of the winter storm.
"These are things they did not budget for and unfortunately were not able to predict," said Eric Mendoza, the student body president for Texas A&M. "It all certainly adds up."
Both schools' student leadership have been in communication and realized they both share similar situations with problems from the storm. Then the idea of working together to spotlight the needs of their peers came about.
"The winter storm was another thing added into the mix, and we see a great need for students right now," said Anagha Kikkeri, the student government president at UT in a press release.
In a past year like no other, it should not be all that big of a surprise to see the two rival schools joining together with a common goal.
“Between the rivalries, there have been a lot of fun comments made, but at the end of the day all of us are raising money for students in Texas," said Sondra White, the director of marketing and communications for the Division of Student Affairs at Texas A&M.
Mendoza believes college students should not have to stress about the affects of the winter storm. He is hoping the relief fund will get students back to focusing on school and some sense of normalcy.
The campaign will last until Mar. 10. At Texas A&M, contributions will go to the Texas A&M University Disaster Relief Fund.
The school that raises the most money for Texas students in need will be announced at the Mar. 30 baseball game between the rivals.
Students at Texas A&M can apply for small grants through the financial aid office.
Mendoza said there are three ways Aggies and Longhorns can be part of the fundraiser; donate, share and apply for assistance.