PITTSBURG — A donation to the SEK Humane Society could help the organization raise $10,000.

The Pittsburg State University Graphic Arts Club dropped off 1,000 calendars featuring SEK Humane Society cats and dogs Wednesday. The calendars will be sold for $10 each to raise money for the humane society.

The project started as a way for the Graphic Arts Club to give back to the community. PSU Assistant Professor in Graphics Imaging Technology Andrea McConnaughey said the idea for the calendar came to her after reading that professional portraits help increase pet adoptions.

She discussed the idea with the club and SEK Humane Society Director Kelci Cooper, and the group had its first photo shoot in April. Another shoot took place this fall.

“It’s a great way to give back, but it also provided hands-on experience,” McConnaughey said. “It let students practice photography, as well as posing pets, which can be difficult.”

Students also got experience laying out the design of the calendar.

One obstacle to the project was the cost of printing calendars, but Sun Graphics of Parsons, Kansas donated the printing. Sun Graphics Sales Associate Susan Mathes graduated from PSU, and offered to help with the project.

Students visited Sun Graphics last week to get experience on how a printing press runs, as well as seeing the first prints of their calendar.

Cooper said the fundraiser is an exciting opportunity for the humane society.

“It’s really exciting, because we normally run on a deficit with the costs for care to our animals,” Cooper said. “We’re always looking for ways to raise funds.”

She also said PSU has always been a great partner for the humane society.

“We have such a good relationship with PSU,” she said. “Some of our best volunteers come from PSU, and I graduated there. It’s great to have support from the university.”

The first opportunity to purchase calendars will be at a Members Only concert hosted by Kansas Crossing Casino to benefit the humane society. Members Only is an ‘80s tribute band.

They'll also be sold at Santa Paws, a photo opportunity for pet owners November 29 at Meadowbrook Mall, as well as being available at The Doggie Bag store in downtown Pittsburg.

— Chance Hoener is a staff writer for the Morning Sun. He can be emailed at choener@morningsun.net or follow him on Twitter @ReporterChance.