Published on July 25, 2011 by William Nunnelley  

Samford University will host the 2011 Journey of Hope South Team sponsored by Push America and Pi Kappa Phi fraternity during its visit to Birmingham July 27-29.  The Journey of Hope (JOH) is a national philanthropic project that raises awareness and support for people with disabilities.

The program started with one collegiate fraternity man in 1987 believing that by riding cross country on his bicycle, he could raise awareness and assist with bringing attention to people with disabilities. The next year, as a result of his ride, Push America created Journey of Hope, one of the largest fraternal fundraising efforts in existence today.

The Journey covers 32 states via three routes (North, South, and the original Trans America route)), more than 12,000 miles, and involves almost 100 bikers, a number of support staff, and indirectly, thousands of people who help bring attention to and acceptance for people with disabilities. Annually, the program raises more than a half million dollars for disability awareness. 

The JOH South Team will be in Birmingham working with several agencies including the Exceptional Foundation, United Cerebral Palsy and others. Samford will be its home for the team’s visit to Birmingham.

Samford will formally greet the team on its arrival to campus at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 27. The team will arrive through the West gate and be directed to the East Stadium Parking Lot. From there, it will be escorted to the Victory Flag Pole for a brief welcoming ceremony.

“On behalf of the Samford Greek community, we invite you to the arrival ceremonies at the flagpole on July 27,” said Denny Bubrig, Samford’s director of Greek life. “The Journey of Hope is a life changing event for its participants and it is an honor for the Samford Greeks, and in particularly Pi Kappa Phi, to be able to be hosting them here.”

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.