The Homecoming queen who fundraised thousandsSAN ANTONIO – Our Lady of The Lake University (OLLU) student Lydia C. Hammer, a student of the Master of Science in Engineering, raised $3871 towards the OLLU Student Emergency Funds and found herself becoming OLLU’s 2023 Homecoming queen. Lydia C. Hammer, OLLU’s 2023 Homecoming Queen, raised $3,871 towards Student Emergency Funds, which aids students with housing, transportation, medical/ dental, utilities, school supplies and much more. Alongside her were other contenders in the OLLU Student Royalty Court who raised money for various causes and, in total, raised $5,655 towards OLLU Student Scholarship funds all in one week. The campaign during Homecoming Week was “Creating a Culture of Philanthropy” and highlighted OLLU’s 4th annual Giving Days. The goal of this campaign was to promote community service, student and community empowerment by encouraging others to support academic success and the beauty of giving back to the community. Hammer, the homecoming queen, Ph.D. Leadership Studies Candidate, Center for Students in Recovery Founding Member and President, Mental Health First Aid Coordinator, and OLLU Psychology Graduate assistant jump-started her fundraising by networking with local San Antonio business owners and artists in hopes of finding sponsors for a drawing. Hammer said she felt called to share her time, talent and treasure to help impact the welfare of others. “Getting community members involved helped the mission of social connections and scholarship solutions,” Hammer said. To fundraise, Hammer said that she reached out to her parish, The Holy Family Catholic Church, and received immediate support there as other parishioners helped her mission by selling drawing tickets and cookies. “I hosted on-campus beverage, bake and miscellaneous sales too. I utilized OLLU’s community marketing via the Center for Student Involvement, as well as social media to promote my fundraising campaign,” Hammer said. The spirit of Homecoming week for OLLU was giving back to the community and encouraging others to do the same. Even though Homecoming is over, Hammer wants others to share the joy of love by lifting each other up, encouraging them to accomplish their goals and achieve happiness. Hammer also shared her tips for those who are looking to fundraise. “When fundraising, one must strategize and network, utilizing local resources to help promote your cause and captivate community collaboration,” Hammer said. However, Hammer does even more on the side, making her crown and recognition more deserving. Hammer partnered with Princeton University to launch Students Recover. She explained that she is a person in long-term recovery from substance abuse and does her best to live out each day with an attitude of gratitude, which is part of the reason for her partnership with Students Recover. “Students Recover put OLLU on the map for the first campus chapter of an incubated substance recovery organization,” Hammer said. Hammer is set to present this collaboration at Ohio State University for the 2023 Association of Recovery in Higher Education (ARHE) Annual Conference and The Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Drug Misuse Prevention and Recovery (HECAOD) National Meeting in June 2023. Along with these side projects, she is an active volunteer for the Stop The Addiction Fatality Epidemic (SAFE Project) and Naloxone Awareness Project. The two projects raise awareness for the opioid epidemic and opioid overdoses. The projects advocate for opioid overdose reversal medication options for those on the road to recovery. As a person in recovery, Hammer believes in not taking life for granted. “Life is a gift,” Hammer said. “Each moment is a chance to embrace blessings along the journey.” She supports and volunteers for many organizations in and outside of San Antonio and wants others to lift each other up.
There is no ads to display, Please add some
Portland Tidwell is a full time student at Our Lady of The Lake University aiming to obtain her bachelors in Mass Communications with a specialization in Multimedia Journalism and a minor in Criminal Justice.
She has interned at the age of fifteen for KENS5, and has acted in a short film titled “What is Love?” and a music video titled “insane” by the band, White Rabbit.
At the age of fifteen, Portland started her own business and LLC, a singing princess party business where she works as the main actress, singer, and owner and operator.
She has obtained over 18,000 community service hours working as a spokesperson for the non-profit, the 100 club of San Antonio, an organization that aims to provide funds for families and children of fallen first responders.
Portland has nine consecutive pageant titles under her belt and has held responsibilities such as Miss Texas, Miss San Antonio’s Outstanding Teen for the miss America organization, Miss Teen United States, etc. In this, Portland has travelled to continue her service work and has proven herself multifaceted in her speaking and writing abilities as well as her knowledge in social media.
On TikTok, Portland has thousands of followers and her content specializes in story telling as well as acting bits. She is a vocalist, actress, impressionist with natural on camera talent as well as a proactive activist that specializes in public speaking and public relations. She can edit videos, write articles, and has a passion for anchoring and reporting on-camera.
Her goal is to work alongside Chris Hansen as an investigative journalist for Inside Editions true crime sector, True Crime Daily.