Students to be rewarded for community work with concert

A group of students hopes to raise $50,000 in four months to bring a major band to campus, and the ticket price is 10 hours.The 10,000 Hours Show is a free concert for 1,000 or more student volunteers who devote 10 or more hours of community service any where in Fort Worth throughout the school year. Previous live performers at 10K concerts include Cake, Ben Folds and Guster. Jet, Jack’s Mannequin and Robert Randolph & The Family Band are scheduled for 10Ks this month.

Josh Noble, junior biology major, is executive director for business for 10K at TCU. Noble plans to raise money through local businesses during the next four months to have “everything planned and ready” for students to sign up to volunteer next fall, he said.

Mike Brooks and Jacek Pruski were seniors at the University of Iowa in 2002 when, strumming their guitars, they developed the 10K idea, said Brooks, who has since become national director for 10K. After participating in a United Way Alternative Spring Break trip, which Noble attended this year, Brooks and Pruski were encouraged to combine their passions for music and volunteering, Brooks said.

In 2006, more than 60,000 volunteers saw Cake perform at the University of Iowa, and Noble hopes the “numbers will skyrocket” at TCU as well.

United Way of America partnered with 10K to provide local support in more than 1,300 counties nationwide, Brooks said.

The 10K concert rewards students by recognizing “the meaningful connection” and personal benefits attained through community activism, Brooks said.

Noble plans to invite high school students to participate in what he said could become an indirect mentor program.

“The hardest part is spreading the word near enough, far enough and early enough to get the support you need from volunteers and local businesses,” Brooks said.

In March, Noble partnered with a local United Way center, built a management team of student leaders and campus advisers and submitted a Management Team Agreement, which he said should be approved next week.

“We are only at the beginning stages,” Noble said, but his team plans to formally announce intentions for a 10K at the beginning of next semester. He said the 10K concert will likely be scheduled for April 2008.

Noble said he is considered a “champion,” who according to the 10K Web site “gets others involved in creating a powerful vision and then makes sure what needs to get done to achieve that vision gets done.”

James Parker, assistant dean of campus life, supports Noble’s efforts. He is becoming a responsible citizen, Parker said, which is part of TCU’s mission statement.

“I think the program will be successful because of Josh’s passion to bring it to campus,” Parker said. “His passion and desire will go along way.”

If every student in the Greek system participates, there will at least be enough volunteer hours to host a 10K, Noble said.

His team must raise at least $50,000 from local contributors for a 10K to be successful.

Most of the $50,000 will go toward the concert, he said, because “we’re not talking about a little band here.