Aug. 23, 2018


staff senate members with shipping boxes


MSU Billings Staff Senate spearheads new project for U.S. troops

“Project: US Troops Care Packages” will be active Aug. 20 to Oct. 26



University Communications and Marketing, 657-2266


MSU BILLINGS NEWS SERVICES — Montana State University Billings Staff Senate will kick off a new project this fall to support United States troops. “Project: US Troops Care Packages” will engage faculty, staff and students to donate items, make the care packages and write letters and thank you notes for those serving stateside and those deployed. It will be held from August 20 to October 26.


The project is part of the Staff Senate’s campus engagement initiative and was presented to and approved by the senators in June. The goal of the project is to involve as many students, faculty and staff in creating the care packages as possible.


Any member of the MSU Billings community with a friend or relative actively serving in any branch of the US military can submit a request for a care package. A mailing address will be required and the care package form can be completed on the Staff Senate webpage.


To begin the project, Staff Senate is looking for donations to fill the boxes. There will be ten patriotic-themed boxes setup across the MSU Billings and City College campuses for donations from the “care package wish list” noted on the Staff Senate webpage. The sites will be first floor of McMullen Hall, the Library, Stingers, Center of Engagement, Athletics-PE Building, City College, College of Education, College of Business, Veterans Upward Bound in Cisel, and Petro Hall. 


The following items are needed for the care packages to be sent to US troops in the states and overseas. The food items need to be small packages so each box will have room for multiple items.

  • candy
  • licorice
  • Girl Scout cookies
  • jerky
  • gum
  • nuts
  • granola
  • cereal
  • small boxes of raisins
  • protein bars/energy bars
  • canned fruit 
  • crackers
  • sunflower seeds
  • popcorn
  • cocoa, tea, instant coffee
  • water flavor packets
  • crosswords, Sudoku books
  • comic books
  • puzzles

There are also items specific for those serving overseas that will need to be gathered, including:

  • wet wipes
  • glass cleaner wipes
  • brush/comb
  • toothbrushes, toothpaste, floss
  • Q-tips
  • disposable razors
  • eye drops

MSU Billings logo items from the Campus Store have been purchased to include in the packages as well.


The idea came to senators after Ranae Marshall of the Laurel Hometown Troops visited a Staff Senate meeting to provide her insight as to how the group could create their own campus-wide project for United States troops. Because of Marshall’s generous offer to have the Laurel Hometown Troops organization cover the shipping costs for the care packages, Staff Senate was able to pursue this great project.


Staff Senate wishes to involve the entire campus in the project. Students, faculty and staff will be given the opportunity to participate in a Service Saturday to help make the care packages. Pete Buchanan, Civic Engagement Coordinator, has scheduled the Service Saturday on October 20 to have students participate in the project. Other care package workdays include Friday, October 12 and 19.


“We should all work together for the good of the college and community,” says Sheri Steiner, president of Staff Senate. “We need to say thank you to those serving our great country, and this is an opportunity to do that.”


The care packages are currently scheduled to be shipped on November 1.


For more information about the project, contact Sheri Steiner, president of Staff Senate, at 406-247-3003 or