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How Do You Honor a Dean? With a CeleBraden

NC State's College of Humanities and Social Sciences Celebrates Dean Jeff Braden With Food Drive

Jeff Braden walking in door with his wife, Jill
Dean Jeff Braden and his wife, Jill, walk into NC State's Feed the Pack Pantry on June 25. Photo credit: Ross Joyner.

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences took a cue from Dean Jeff Braden in deciding how to celebrate his 13-year legacy of leadership: make it fun, and make it matter. CeleBraden activities culminated in a food drive to support one of the outgoing dean’s priorities: NC State’s Feed the Pack Pantry. 

The CeleBraden food drive netted 695 pounds of food, and $3676 in donations in support of the pantry. In typical fashion, and as one of his final acts as dean of humanities and social sciences, the dean and his crew delivered the food they collected on a blistering Friday afternoon, and restocked the pantry shelves. 

695 pounds of food

netted in the CeleBraden food drive

$3,676 in donations

raised in support of Feed the Pack

“Jeff has been consistent in his support of the Pack Essentials initiative that addresses food, housing and financial insecurity among our students” says Mike Giancola, NC State’s assistant vice provost for academic and student affairs. “Especially over the last year, he has shown up and contributed regularly.”

“For a number of years, Jeff issued an annual friendly challenge to his fellow deans around the holidays to see which college could collect the most food for the pantry,” Giancola says. “He and members of his staff would visit the other colleges around campus to collect the food, and they always sang a few holiday carols when they showed up.

“We were never clear whether that was a prize or a consequence for participating,” he says with a smile, “but it was a great tradition.” 

group of people holding donated food
Dean Braden and his staff, who often encouraged other colleges to donate to the Feed the Pack Pantry around the holidays, take part in the CeleBraden food drive. Photo credit: Ross Joyner.
boxes of food with Dean Braden's photo
As part of the CeleBraden food drive, Dean Braden’s photo was put on several packages. Photo credit: Ross Joyner.
Dean Braden stocking shelf
Dean Braden stocks the shelves of the Feed the Pack Pantry on June 25. Photo credit: Ross Joyner.

Giancola says Braden supported the work of the pantry behind the scenes as well, volunteering regularly, and often working alongside students. “Some may argue that Jeff had more important things to do as dean than to volunteer at the food pantry,” Giancola says. “But the truth is, his example spoke volumes to me, and to students, staff and faculty.” 

The Feed the Pack Pantry is open to all members of the campus community, inclusive of students, staff and faculty. You can support the Feed the Pack Pantry by volunteering or donating funds or food.