UM alumni donate more than 750 masks to students

Published 5:27 pm Thursday, November 12, 2020

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Alumni worked to ensure UM students remained safe and healthy during the fall semester, as they donated several hundred purchased and handmade masks for student use.

Last summer, the UM National Alumni Association purchased one cloth mask for each UM student, faculty and staff member to use when returning to campus for the fall semester. From there, the University’s alumni stepped up even further to provide additional masks to students to ensure they always have access to a clean mask between washes.

For several weeks, UM alumni worked to make and purchase more than 750 additional masks, which were provided to the Student Life office for students to pick up. Alumnae Savannah Kitchens ’09, Dr. Lindsey Sherrill ’07, Lauren Murphy ’10, Christine Soria ’12, Claudia Harrell ’73; faculty member Dr. Leonor Vázquez-González and Alumni Affairs staff Tiffany Bunt ’00 and Carolyn Jones ’11 coordinated the effort.

“Like a lot of people, the COVID-19 outbreak left me feeling helpless. I know for myself, and I think for many of us, finding ways we could help from home was extremely comforting,” said Sherrill, who made and donated 145 masks. “I’m a teacher, and I’ve spent so much time worrying about students in our state over the last few months. Doing something with my hands to help my Montevallo family let me replace that worry with service.”

The group promoted the initiative, took in donations of materials, made and recruited others to make masks and received donations to purchase more cloth masks. Alumni from across the U.S. contributed to the efforts.

“Our whole committee is committed to our students and community. Sharing our talents and abilities—both to organize and craft—lets us make a small but real difference in keeping the students we love safe and the place we call home open,” Sherrill added.

The UMNAA is continuing its mask-making effort throughout the academic year.

To learn more about the effort, or to donate to the program, visit