Fourteenth class of UNC Buckley Public Service Scholars honored at graduation event


 
 
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will honor 307 seniors who dedicated themselves to service during their time at Carolina as Buckley Public Service Scholars (BPSS). Chancellor Carol Folt will address the group at a pre-graduation ceremony 5 – 7 p.m. Friday, May 11 in Memorial Hall. All graduates will receive a Carolina blue and white cord to wear at commencement on May 13 to represent their achievement.

The Buckley Public Service Scholars program, part of the Carolina Center for Public Service, supports and strengthens Carolina students’ commitment to service by providing a framework to make a positive impact. BPSS participants build portfolios reflecting their learning and unique experiences throughout North Carolina, the nation and the world; connect with others who care about similar issues; and are involved in training and coursework designed to make their service more effective. More than 10 percent of Carolina undergraduates are currently enrolled in the BPSS program, representing 65 out of 77 majors on campus. The 2018 class of Buckley Public Service Scholars represents 49 North Carolina counties, 20 other states and eight other countries. The students being honored join the 2,419 past BPSS graduates since 2004, bringing the total number of scholars to 2,726.

“BPSS allowed me to use my position as a young woman of color coming from poverty to the benefit of my community,” public policy major Tiffany Turner said. “I developed a voice which I was able to use in communications and marketing for TABLE, the Jamie Kirk Hahn Foundation and Pupusas for Education.”

The 307 students graduating in the 2018 class of Buckley Public Service Scholars reported more than 130,800 hours of service. To receive formal recognition, BPSS participants must have a minimum GPA, document at least 300 hours of service, take one service-learning course, attend four skills-training workshops and complete a final reflection activity. Many of this year’s graduates surpassed these requirements; 10 students completed more than 1,000 hours of service and one student completed more than 2,000 hours of service.

Since its inception in 2003, 9,678 students have participated in the BPSS program, contributing 1.8 million hours of service. This year, participating students reported service with more than 1,000 organizations including the Campus Y, Compass Center for Women and Families, and Carolina For The Kids. Of the hours reported by this year’s graduates, 78 percent was performed in North Carolina, 11 percent in other states and 11 percent in other countries.

“The 2018 Buckley Public Service Scholars embody what it means to be a public servant,” said Lynn Blanchard, director of the Carolina Center for Public Service. “For example, over the course of this school year, helping those affected and displaced by natural disasters was a top priority. Students continuously rose as leaders for disaster relief as well as so many other service areas. I am certain they will carry these civic values with them after graduation and will continue to affect positive change in their communities.

BPSS is supported by the Walter White Buckley Jr. Endowment.

Learn more about each graduate in the 2018 BPSS bulletin.

2018 Buckley Public Service Scholar graduates by North Carolina county, state and country:

Photos available by request.

Alamance – Natalie R. Charamut, Barbara Cronin, Alexander Murphy Mebane III, Haleigh Elizabeth Prysock

Bladen – Hayley Merrell Hall

Brunswick – Amber Nicole Fulford, Carly Michelakis, Lindsey Diane Welch

Buncombe – Travis Broadhurst, Janki Paresh Desai, Leah Grace Everist, Calli Gabrielle Hamrick, Anna Sophia Whelchel

Burke – Christina Adkins, Anna Lynn Jacks

Cabarrus – Kaylee Kristine Clary, Hiwot Abena Ekuban, Jamie Lynn Gate, Alison Hollis, Emily Hollis, Courtney Ann Nelson, Laura Michelle Perrotta, Sophie Roseanna Plott

Caldwell – Samantha Morgan Houston

Carteret – Marissa Elardo

Catawba – Jennifer Elaine Craft, Sara Carson Edwards, Rachael Sarah Hamm, Jaclyn Tina L’Amoreaux

Chatham – Lindsey Holloway, Leslie Morales, Dana Leah Walker

Craven – Kennedy Jade Adams, Meredith Medlin, Kimlynn Mylan Ngo, Austin Tyler Seamster

Cumberland – Su Hyun Cho, Brian Michael Fields, Linh Huynh, Hanna Kim, Caroline Madison Pope

Davidson – Olivia Marie Bruff, Logan Hartley, Sarah Eva Thomas Sturdivant

Davie – Sydney Caroline Browder

Durham – Chloe Adrianna Brown, Jeliyah Shaquan Clark, Julia Elaine D’Amico, Sreepriya Gayam, Claire Leadbetter, Kevin James Parham

Forsyth – Brittany Jane Aves, Kalli Elainia Bunch, Elizabeth Comtois, Amanda Drabble, Ryan Chandler Fuller, Lauren Marie Gebbia, Mary Elizabeth Johnson, Vanessa Luo, Layla Namak, Sophie Rupp, Deanelle Thompson, Madeleine Valier, Ryan James Weisner

Franklin – Anna Dodson

Gaston – Clara Jane Davison, Erica Allison Day, Rachael Madison Purvis

Granville – Lawrence Alsthon Bacudio, Alexandra Bruton Chura

Guilford – Lauren Elise Beane, O’Malley Bentson, Saumya Goel, Neil Harwani, Jordan Dace Hennessee, Simran Khadka, Rachel Susannah Lempp, Isabelle Rose Morgan, Mona Sajjad, Alexa Pearl Schleien, Clare Mangan Schmedes, Rayad Bin Shams, William Clayton Swords, Tiffany Marie Turner, Treasure Williams, Jessie Winfree, Shan Yu

Halifax – Grace Guo

Haywood – Bailey Garrett Hill, Chloe Elise Zacher

Henderson – Emily Hagstrom, Hollie Anne Rutledge 

Iredell – Hanna Brooks, Philip John Helderlein, Haley Alexis Leazer, Niraja Pancholy, Vinya Posham

Lee – Priya Desai

Lincoln – Rachel Frances Dango, Brittany Dove

Madison – Anna Lynne Zimmerman

Macon – Margaret McAllister

Mecklenburg – Alaowei Amanah, Kimberly Elise Baudhuin, Alison Noel Bonner, Tonesha D’Shelle Curenton, Lillian Ruth Dillard, Caroline Taylor Frame, Alexandra Gaines, Heather Marie Grace, Jacob Ian Greenblatt, Danielle Hall, Emily Hightower, Marquitta Howard, Kay Soonmin Hwang, Olivia Jackson-Jordan, Pambu Kali, David William Katibah, Hariklea Vasilike Kokenes, Jill Catherine Levinson, Allison Marvin, Kavya Lakshmi Menon, Taylor Caroline Newsome, Marissa Marguerite O’Neill, Juhi Shilpesh Patel, Vishwa Ashokbhai Patel, Madison Quigley, Emily Reader, Adam Tucker Sheinhaus, Gwendolyn Renee Smith, Ella Marie Smoak, Katherine Jill Starr, Domenica Kamille Vargas Bitar, Emma Watts, Kristin Weiss, Tori Wentz, Laura Elizabeth Wenzel, Claudia Yatzkan, John Paul Zalaquett

Moore – Christiana Boals

New Hanover – Elaine Marie King, Joseph Francois Marie Maitre, Mimi Tran, Aidan Ray Walker, Helen Xiao 

Onslow – Kalina E. Taylor

Orange – Agustin Baler, Sarah Costello Dwyer, Erika Rubi Franco Quiroz, Nico Christian Krachenfels, Samuel Elliot Krause, Emily Kupec, Doreen Edith Nalyazi, Grace Porter, Nathaniel Pritchard, Frances Reuland, Alexa Schulte, Jasmine K. Sun, Claire Elizabeth Weintraub, Sarah Judith Wright

Pasquatonk – Anna Elizabeth Robertson

Pender – Patricia Whalen

Person – Princess Ariana Majors

Pitt – Ashish Thakurdas Khanchandani, Erin Kelly Naziri, Abigail Rae Needell, Karen K. Saeed, Jacob Benjamin Stocks, Ushma Uday Vaidya

Polk – Bridget Grace Gallagher

Robeson – Yasmin Hill, Danielle Renee Smith

Rowan – Rebecca Marie Agner, Alex Billingsley, Katelyn Laine Buffett, Katherine Lukens Grant, Victor Pereira, Jordan Wise

Stanly – Adrienne Soraya Hill

Surry – Nicole Ashley Defreitas, Emily Grace Lowe, Chandler Jayne Musson, Sydney Anne Peavy

Union – Megan Balentine, Adrienne Solange Bonar, Mishelle Angela Duran, Desirae Delgado Fewell, Madeline Claire McGee, Meredith Blake Sumrell 

Wake – Keerthi Surej Anand, Aditya M. Anerao, Rachel Anne Bailey, Olivia Grace Bane, Sarah Bass, Mary Grady Burnette Bell, Laura Elizabeth Brady, Emily Browning, William Michael Buddendeck, Samuel Kevin Chao, Elizabeth Ciociola, Madeline Cooke, Cayla Lauren Culbreth, Anne Yichen Feng, Andrea Marie Fitzgerald, Miranda Hope Foster, Alexander James Gartland, Sarah Elizabeth Gee, Abby Gostling, Pallavi Gulati, Shelly Guo, Anne Marie Hagerty, Emily Haston, Charlotte Hopson, Allison Horn, Rachel Eve Horowitz, Jessica Hongchelle Hu, Vishal Iyer, Nupur Jain, Kaelin Elizabeth Kennedy, Charity Lackey, Naomi Lahiri, Kelsey Leigh Mason, Griffin Andrew Morehead, Aimee Qin Murphy, Ami Patel, Paulina Powierza, Arunima Punjala, Sahana Raghunathan, Carolyn Day Rapp, Megan Frances Sefler, Shatakshi Shekhar, Jonathan Smith, Rachel Tan, Shannon M. Thompson, Nelya Topa, Paige Emily Trexler, Roshni Verma, Luyu Wang, Meghan Whitney

Watauga – Maia Ravyn Yarborough

Wayne – Lindsay Ann Player, Myra Noor Waheed

Wilson – Michael Hayden Vick, Shelby Victoria Anderson

STATES:

Arizona – Radhika Arora, Gabrielle Rose Geenen

CaliforniaCaeli Morgan Harr

Colorado – Allison Karen DeSarro, Cesar Victor Rodriguez

ConnecticutAlexis Lin, Mark Molinaro

Florida – Lorena Gan, Melissa A. Holmes, Niveditha Jagadesh, Martina Knechel, Terri Long, Analisa Sorrells, Alex Sun

Georgia – Mackenzie Bogiages, Isatta Feika, Bridget Evelyn Johnson

Illinois – Marisa Sclafani

Indiana – Lindsey Faye Wells

Kentucky – Caroline Christine Folz

Maryland – Andrea Jacqueline Barnes, Sarah Ann Benecky, Aryana Bolourian, Adrianna Lopaczynski, Holly E. Ozgun, Carolyn Reuland, Alexus Roane, Kathryn Ashley Turner 

Missouri – Justin David Cole

New Jersey – Snehal Parik

New York – Lindsey Elizabeth Barden, Claire Boyd, Samantha Espada, Ruby G. Patel, Michela Jaye Schillinger

Pennsylvania – Kristen McGreevy, Nyla Numan, Saleha Rana, Caitlin Ann Rosica

Rhode Island – Magdalena Alexandra Rainey, Nicole Trupiano

South Carolina – Ariana Janae’ Rivens

Tennessee – Kelly Liu

Texas – Shelby Victoria Anderson, Catrin Corrie, Karla Guadalupe Garcia, Daverian Travun Williams

Virginia – Nia Fay Cox, Nicholas Robert Jennings, Holly Elizabeth Johnson, Kaelah Sheldonia Pou, Natalie Morgan Radford, Klio Nicolette Stroubakis, David Bao Tang 

West Virginia – Jamie Rose

INTERNATIONAL:

Brazil – Andre Ceccotti

United Kingdom – Lauren Eaves

South Korea – Grace Han

Canada – Renuka Koilpillai

China – Xiaoqian Niu

Russia – Olga Prokunina

Germany – Cathleen Annelies Rueckeis

Italy – Emily Ann Venturi

-Carolina-

Tiffany Turner’s journey from needing food to a life passion for alleviating food insecurity

By Charlotte McArthur

Tiffany Turner works to alleviate food insecurityMost Mondays for the past four years, Tiffany Turner could be found sorting cans and packing food boxes at TABLE. She did this because alleviating food insecurity is a passion born from personal experience. Now a senior majoring in public policy and minoring in social and economic justice, and marine science, Turner exemplifies the essence of Carolina community involvement through her passions for service, teaching others the value of healthy eating, and providing scholarships and opportunities to undocumented students.

Turner, a 2018 graduate from Greensboro, North Carolina, spent her time at Carolina serving the community as a Bonner Leader and Buckley Public Service Scholar participant and was awarded an inaugural Scott D. MacDonald Community Service Fellowship. Since July of 2017, she has served as the executive director for the nonprofit Pupusas for Education. Pupusas for Education is the sister venture to So Good Pupusas, a food truck and catering company started by a UNC alumna that uses its profits to provide scholarships to undocumented students.

“Nonprofits touch every person’s life in some way, shape or form, and for me, they had a particularly strong impact,” Turner said. “When I was younger, I had a big sister from the Big Brothers Big Sisters of America program and received weekly food bags from food pantries. As soon as my family was in a more financially stable situation, I began to do my part to pay it forward and help organizations think through how we could take their impact to the next level.”

Turner said that while she is grateful for the role nonprofits played in her life, she often felt frustrated about the lack of representation in their staff and the way in which nonprofits approached their work.

“Many of the food pantries that served weekly meals were not thinking much about culturally relevant and appropriate foods, and I wanted to change that thinking,” Turner said. “Once I started this work, I knew it was the work that I wanted to do for the rest of my life.”

Tiffany Turner volunteers at TABLEIn addition to participating in the Buckley Public Service Scholars program, Turner served in the Campus Y’s Bonner Leaders program where she worked with community partner TABLE to alleviate food insecurity in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro community. In the summers after her sophomore and junior years, Turner was a fellow in the Jamie Kirk Hahn Foundation Fellowship and later served as the food systems team senior fellow. In class, Turner connected the dots between her community work and academics through two APPLES Service-Learning courses, Nonprofit Consulting and Public Policy Clinic, and Philanthropy as a Tool for Social Change.

“If it were not for the Buckley Public Service Scholars program and the Bonner Leaders program, I may not have settled on a major course of study that aligned with my values and passions — public policy,” Turner said. “I can attribute much of my success in college to these two programs and the people behind the scenes who believed in me and encouraged me.”

Turner added that she is happy to have helped change the dominant narrative in the spaces that she has been in and has worked to ensure that the voices that needed to be at the table were heard. The community was always at the forefront of her work.

“Overall, I think I have grown so much from these experiences,” Turner said. “In teaching others about healthy eating, I also learned about it myself. In working to fight for equity in education for undocumented students, I’ve grown closer to the students we’ve worked with and learned much about mentorship. In all of these things, I have become more vocal and less afraid to speak up for what I believe in.”

After graduation, Turner plans to stay with Pupusas for Education for the summer to pilot a Summit and Fellowship program for undocumented students. In August, she will move to New York City to conduct a yearlong fellowship at FoodCorps, a nonprofit on a mission to work with communities to connect kids to healthy food in school, through the Newman’s Own Foundation Fellowship program. Turner plans to return to North Carolina after her fellowship year with hopes of continuing her work with Pupusas for Education, taking part in another nonprofit program or attending graduate school.

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Passion for giving back connects student and alumnus on a common mission

By Catie Armstrong

Teaching, research and SERVICE. That is the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s mission. A commitment to this mission is what Tori Dunlap, a first-year student, and alumnus Donald Ubell have in common.

Don Ubell creates Ubell Community Service ScholarshipSince graduating from Carolina in 1967, Donald Ubell has been giving back to communities throughout the country and to Carolina. An attorney living in Charlotte, Ubell has spent his career working with state and local governments and institutions of higher education, including UNC-Chapel Hill as its bond counsel since 1986. “Community service is a subset of public service,” Ubell said. Now, he is building on his legacy as a public servant by establishing the Ubell Community Service Scholarship with hopes of inspiring fellow Tar Heels to find their passion, and skill, in service and then “multiply the effect.”

Community service scholarships are offered to a select group of service-oriented students who receive a $5,000 annual tuition scholarship. Through the Carolina Center for Public Service, scholars participate in the Buckley Public Service Scholars program which provides training, mentorship, opportunities and structure to build knowledge and skills related to their particular service interests.

The inaugural Ubell Community Service Scholarship went to Tori Dunlap, a human development and family studies major also from Charlotte. Long before Dunlap came to Carolina, she engaged in public service. But when tragedy struck her life, Dunlap said that she truly learned what it meant to rely on others for support.

Ubell Scholar Tori Dunlap“I became an orphan at the age of sixteen,” Dunlap said. “So I know what it looks like to rely on the community surrounding you for support in various areas of life.” Dunlap’s community gathered to support her. Today she gives back to honor the impact others had on her life.

Ubell, who also supports the Carolina Covenant, understands the importance of scholarship and service. “The Community Service Scholarship seemed to be something that went beyond the Covenant to inspire students to give back to the community. My thought was that Carolina was leading again by creating these scholarships to help train students in community service and to be leaders in community service once they graduated.”

Dunlap added that the Ubell Community Service Scholarship enables her to attend UNC without the burden of financial worry. That, in turn, allows her to engage in public service at UNC, multiplying the effect. She is involved in the First-Year Service Corps and works with Student U, an organization in Durham that provides students with the resources necessary to help them excel in middle school, high school and college.

“I am passionate about community service because I have been extremely impacted and even reliant on acts of service in recent years,” Dunlap said. “I believe it is really important for people, who have the advantage of knowing the personal effects of reliance, to respond accordingly to needs in their communities.”

-Carolina-

Service experiences lead to dream career for senior Analisa Sorrells

For Analisa Sorrells, a December 2017 graduate from Windermere, Florida, time in service at UNC led her to her dream career path – one of giving back and helping others.

Analisa Sorrells volunteering at TABLE“When I arrived at Carolina, I immediately got involved with Tar Heel TABLE and the Buckley Public Service Scholars (BPSS) program,” Sorrells said. “I was set on studying nutrition. I was fascinated by food and how it impacted our health and our livelihoods. I took an entire first year of prerequisites – anatomy and organic chemistry in all – before a few experiences that completely changed my academic and career course.”

Those experiences were in service.

The summer after her freshman year, Sorrells interned with Feeding Children Everywhere, an Orlando nonprofit that provides healthy meals to those in need. “I learned more about the startling reality of childhood hunger – both domestically and internationally – and about the various nonprofits and organizations working to end it,” Sorrells said.

“When I returned to UNC for my sophomore year, I took on a larger role in Tar Heel TABLE, learning more about hunger that existed right outside my dorm window in Chapel Hill.”

At the same time, Sorrells also enrolled in her first public policy class. “I took the class on a whim and fell in love with the material. For the first time, I learned about more than just the social problems facing our world – but about the possibility we each have to make a positive impact on them through our careers and through service. I changed my major to public policy and never looked back. After taking the APPLES service-learning course on nonprofit consulting and serving as a board member for TABLE, my interest in the nonprofit sector was solidified.”

During her sophomore year, Sorrells also participated in an APPLES Service-Learning alternative winter break where she was introduced to the concept of learning outside of the classroom. She engaged in hands-on service in the Asheville community, meeting with community leaders, local government agencies and nonprofits connected to hunger and homelessness.

“I was able to grasp the issues at hand more deeply than ever before,” Sorrells said. “This experience encouraged me to enroll in APPLES service-learning courses and continue pursuing skills trainings through BPSS, as they completed my undergraduate experience in a way that traditional coursework never could.”

During the summer of 2017, Sorrells partnered with EducationNC through the Jamie Kirk Hahn Foundation Fellowship. She worked on the early childhood team and learned more about the importance of early childhood education, nonprofit management and social justice. Her project with EducationNC combined her interests in education and nutrition, allowing her to study and report on summer meal programs in North Carolina.

After her fellowship, EducationNC offered Sorrells a position as a reporter and executive fellow for the spring of 2018. Now with more than 300 service hours under her belt through BPSS, APPLES and TABLE, Sorrells said that this position is a perfect fit for her interests.

“It allows me to work in a nonprofit organization that I believe is striving to make North Carolina a better place for all,” she said. “I will travel across the state and meet with various leaders and change-makers, as well as report on pressing issues in education and public health. I look forward to taking the lessons I’ve learned inside and outside of the classroom at Carolina and put them into action with my role at EducationNC.”

-Carolina-

Photo credit: Rhesa Versola

Public service trainings connect students to community organizations

By Becca Kronebusch

The Buckley Public Service Scholars program (BPSS) strives to provide students with various diverse, specialized training opportunities within the community. One recent training partnership between BPSS and the YMCA of the Triangle taught students on how to effectively protect children from abuse through the Stewards of Children program.

Ryan Nilsen, program officer for the Carolina Center for Public Service, said there was a great deal of interest in training programs promoting child safety.

“It was a great fit because we have so many students looking for trainings and so many of those students are working directly with children,” Nilsen said.

Meredith Stewart, YMCA Child Safety and Program Risk Meredith Stewart, director of Child Safety and Program Risk at the YMCA, is a passionate advocate for Stewards of Children and leads most training sessions. In her training sessions, Stewart shares that one out of every 10 children is sexually assaulted in the United States. Learning about how to protect children in our community is paramount to ending child abuse.

“The sexual abuse of children is preventable, and I might have some information… that, if shared with other adults, can save a child,” Stewart said. “It is my responsibility to share this education with others so that children are protected and cared for and we, as a community, grow the next generation of healthy adults.”

Training sessions cover the five steps of protecting children: learning the facts, minimizing the opportunity, talking about it, recognizing the signs and reacting responsibly.

BPSS student Julia Corbett, a junior public policy and economics major from Somers, New York, said she participated in the training because as a camp counselor and babysitter, she cares about the children she interacts with.

“The most beneficial part of the training for me was the video interviews with survivors of child sexual abuse,” Corbett said. “Their stories were revealing and informative, and it helped me understand how abuse happens, what it looks like and its impact on children and survivors.”

Stewart also said she values the partnership between BPSS and Stewards of Children. One of her favorite parts about these sessions is meeting different people and learning from them.

“The story of child sexual abuse is not mine alone to tell,” she said. “I am just a messenger and teacher of prevention and awareness. I always say the best way to learn something is to teach it so I will keep teaching and learning… to change the statistics on child abuse.”

Stewards of Children will continue to partner with BPSS to train more students to successfully advocate for all children. The program also has community training sessions in various locations across the Triangle. Visit the YMCA of the Triangle to learn more or register for a community training session.

Carolina

Thirteenth class of UNC Buckley Public Service Scholars honored at graduation event


 
Chapel Hill, N.C. – Two hundred and fifty seniors, all who dedicated themselves to service during their time at UNC, will be honored as Buckley Public Service Scholars (BPSS) May 12 at a pre-graduation ceremony in Memorial Hall. All graduates will receive a Carolina blue and white cord to wear at commencement on May 14 to represent their achievement.

The Buckley Public Service Scholars program, part of the Carolina Center for Public Service, supports and strengthens Carolina students’ commitment to service by providing a framework to make a positive impact through service. BPSS participants build portfolios reflecting their learning and unique experiences throughout North Carolina, the nation and the world; connect to others who care about similar issues; and are involved in training and course work that make their service more effective. Launched in 2003, more than 10 percent of Carolina undergraduates are currently enrolled as BPSS participants, representing 49 out of 65 majors on campus. The 2017 class of Buckley Public Service Scholars represent 33 North Carolina counties, 22 other states and five other countries. The students being honored join the 2,167 past Buckley Public Service Scholars who have graduated since 2004, bringing the total number of scholars to 2,418.

Madeline Pliska 2017 Buckley Public Service Scholar“The Buckley Public Service Scholars program gave me an outlet for my love and passion for service,” said Madeline Pliska, a member of the 2017 graduating class. “It gave me a community of like-minded individuals to share my journey through Carolina with, and helped me continue to chase my personal belief that we, as humans, exist to help others.”

The 250 students graduating in the 2017 class of Buckley Public Service Scholars reported more than 109,000 hours of service. To receive formal recognition, BPSS participants must have a minimum grade-point average, document at least 300 hours of service, take one service-learning course, attend four skills-training workshops and complete a final reflection activity. Many of this year’s graduates surpassed these requirements; three students completed more than 1,000 hours of service and one student completed more than 2,000 hours of service.

Since its inception, 8,902 students have participated in the BPSS program, contributing 1.8 million hours of service. This year, participating students reported service with more than 1,000 organizations like Community Empowerment Fund, Refugee Support Center, Farmer FoodShare, Global Health Connections International and Carolina For The Kids. Of the hours reported by this year’s graduates, 70 percent primarily benefited North Carolina, 19 percent other states and 11 percent other countries.

“The 2017 Buckley Public Service Scholars play an important role in strengthening the culture of service and engagement at Carolina,” said Lynn Blanchard, director of the Carolina Center for Public Service. “These students uphold UNC’s commitment to campus-community partnership. I am certain they will carry these civic values with them after graduation and will continue to affect positive change in their communities.”

BPSS is supported through the Walter White Buckley Jr. Endowment. For more information about each Buckley Public Service Scholar, see the 2017 Buckley Public Service Scholars graduation bulletin.

2017 Buckley Public Service Scholar graduates by county, state and country:

Alamance County – Halie Ellinger, Grace Elizabeth Gunter, Elgin Yalin

Beaufort County – Hallie Jo French

Buncombe County – Marissa Brooke Cranford, Jeeun Noelle Lee, Abel Lomeli-Garcia, Oliana Luke, Nirja SutariaBurke County

Burke County – Sarah Katherine Long

Cabarrus County – Leah Baker, Priyenka Khatiwada, Leslie Moen, Gray Rodgers

Chatham County – Gloria Ashley Gaines, Kathryn Elisabeth Thomann

Cumberland County – Ashley Nicole Jenkins, Adrienne Lynn Than Maung, Ching Yi Ng, Rashiidah Richardson, Samantha Michelle G. Ty

Durham County – Vanessa Canuto, Jacqueline Ceron Hernandez, Elizabeth Ann Ferguson, Robin Lowe-Skillern, Esther Oluwatoni Madugu

Forsyth County – Leona Aisha Amosah, Hannah Angle, Akanksha Arora, Anna Davis Caudill, Achsah Renee Nicole Coleman, McKenzie Sean Folan, Hannah Kathryn Forbes, Kevin Davis Giff, Austin Dean Gragson, Lauren Grace Kent, Maleeha Mahmood Khan, Gustell A. Preston, Mishana Sturdivant*, Madison Elizabeth Watts, Mikala Ashlyn Whitaker

Granville County – Erin Nicole Welsh

Guilford County – Abena Adu-Nyako, Ronnie Armstrong Jr., Timber Grey Beeninga, Shira Pauline Chandler, Obinna Lucky Ejimofor, Amina Lawal Garba, Joshua Frazier Hanover, Matthew William Harris, Paige Hines, Sarah Carter Jessup, Kathleen Grace Kilmartin, Samantha Elise Link, Amy Katherine Lyon, Oscar August Menzer, Sydney Mitchell, Dhara Shah, Sarah Bethany Spiker*, Jason Urbano

Halifax County – Jaime Catherine DiLauro, Veronica Edmonds, Whitney Kay Edmonds

Haywood County – Kayla Joe Campbell

Henderson County – Luis Cristian Acosta, Kaitlyn Maddox

Hertford County – Casey D. Grant

Iredell County – Olivia Elizabeth Andretti*, Mary Kate Crawford, Lauren Rokavec Fotsch

Jackson County – Rose-Helen Xiuqing Graham

Johnston County – Nicholas James Gray Britt, Jonathan Taylor Wall

Lincoln County – Leslie Leung, Jade Loendorf

Mecklenburg County – Tia Andrade, Madison Ann Barnhart, Jacquelyn Beatty, Michael F. Caragher, Graham Collins, Elizabeth Anne Fleischer, Laura Wells Gill, Francesca Elena Maddy Gines, Kajal Rosy Grover, Phillip Montgomery Jester, HueyShan Lin, Elizabeth Matulis, Lucas Nielsen, Katherine Laine Nuccio, Jessica Rose O’Hara, Janki Rajendra Patel, Sarah Savannah Peters, Emily Reckard, Srilekhya Sure, Jayasri Vijay, Colleen J. Watson, Julia Elaine Whitfield, Morgan Zemaitis

Nash County – Carrie Lewis*

New Hanover County – Tirthna Savajibhai Badhiwala, Addie Humphrey, Audra Rose Killian, Emily Yvonne Milkes, Justine Orlovsky-Schnitzler, Alexis Worthington Shiro*, Katherine Marie Vaughn, Matthew Gray Wilson

Onslow County – Stephanie Nicole Wangerin

Orange County – Ranjitha Ananthan, Sarah Brooks, Carly Marie Collette, Hannah Stein Eichner, Anthony Kan, Amy Lee, Mary Eloise Pate, Kendell A. Silveira, Brooke Mackenzie Sobolewski, Enrique Toloza, Juliana Rae Wulforst, Maria Yao, Garrett Young-Wright, Lilly Alice Yuan

Pitt County – Kimberly Mewborn Keiter, Caitlin Mateer Seyfried, Jared Douglas Williams

Randolph County – Gemma Guadalupe Herrera, Abigail Martinez Jaimes, Jordan Caroline Jarrett

Robeson County – Sajan Y. Amin

Rowan County – Kaylyn Beatrice Pogson

Rutherford County – Lindsay Denise Barth

Stanly County – Lea Nicole Efird*

Union County – Jacqlyn Grilli, Vickie Erin Poulimenos

Vance County – Morgan Elizabeth Noel

Wake County – Kesha Acharya, Mahnoor Baloch, Morgan Lindsey Bush, Stephanie Ann-wei Chien, Kristen M. Chung, Youmna Elkamhawy*, Daniel Andrew Farrell,
Jessica Maria Ferrall, Taylor McKenly Fleming, Rachel Leigh Floyd, Dana Gentry, Nicole Gonzalez, Sara Heikal, Lauren Elizabeth Hitchings, Lindsey Holbrook, Taylor Rena Howard, Christopher Thomas Jadelis, Wendy Kally Ji, Hannah Louise Johnson, Benjamin Laird Hutton Jones, Sydney Grace Kalin, Colleen Kane, Isabella Hye Eun Kim, Maria Hye-Jin Kim*, Bryan Brinton Lester, Sian Li, Sydney Rowan Mark, Cherise Drusilla McManus, Caroline Nagy, Christine Keeyoon Nam, Meaghan Nazareth, Abigail Neal, Lauren Norris, Jordan Peterkin, Sarah Elizabeth Pupa, Pranavi Sanka, Aribah Masood Shah, Julia Shen, Rithi Sridhar, Elizabeth Stine, Christina Antonia Stone, Laurel Anne Sykes, Kiera Brigh Turner, Christopher Bin Wang, Caroline Aunspaugh Woronoff, June Grace Yang

Warren County – Selina Jaime Lopez

Wilson County – Christopher Tyler Sharp, Joseph Blake Wall

Alabama – Margaret Alice Williams

Arizona – Anjani Patel

California – Grace Busby, Giulia Raffaella Curcelli, Abigail Deborah Kinnaman, Kenneth Lee

Colorado – Madison Sarah Stark

Florida – Pamela Brody, Natalie Marie Cabo, Snigdha Das, Raina Danielle Enrique, Emily Isabel Shipley Granados, Virginia Keaton Green, Leah Francesca Jimenez, Samantha Kerker, Morgan Ashley McLaughlin, Jessica Caitlin Porter, Sofia A. Soto Sugar, Catherine Diana Wilsnack

Georgia – Sahar Alimohamadi, Sarah Ellyn Boland, Dory Julia Gellins MacMillan

Hawaii – Khin Oo

Illinois – April A. Hamer, Hannah Yayoi Saggau, John Charles Von Drasek

Kansas – Manuela Nivia

Louisiana – Katherine Anna Henning

Maryland – Morgan Focas, Martha Isaacs, Amara Gabrielle Jordan, Brooke Jacqueline Kilker, Jenn Morrison

Massachusetts – Jonathan C. S. Lynn

Minnesota – Madeline Jean Pliska

New Jersey – Sarah Belle Hart, Brianna Nichelle Moody, Ambika Paulson

New Mexico – Ana Cutts Dougherty

New York – Jessica Feeley, Amrithaa Mangala Gunabalan, Kelly Lynn Jasiura, Ryan Lupo, Hailey Amanda Orgass, Brian Christopher Riefler, Caitlin Schwagerl, Reyanne Nichole Strong, Exornam Angela Tettey

Ohio – Maggie Brownrigg, Claire Elizabeth Poindexter, Thomas E. Shockley III

Pennsylvania – Billie Rainley Patterson

South Carolina – Harrison Lancaster

Tennessee – Winston Arthur Bell, Townes Bouchard-Dean

Virginia – Brittany Anderson, Nicole Marie Brown, Sarah Henderson, Sheng-Shin Christina Lee, Veronica Sever

West Virginia – Austin Michael Mueller

Colombia – Daniela Lopez

Scotland – Alexander Clayton

Vietnam – Phuong Dinh Truc Nguyen

China – Ting Zhang

Peru – Maria Luisa Loo Deng*

*Indicates December 2016 graduates.

UNC students mentor to be role models

Sometimes, when college students hang out with elementary and middle school students, transformative experiences happen. That’s how Taysha James, a senior sociology major from Maple Hill, North Carolina and Jonathan Buechner, a junior European studies and political science major from Greensboro, described their time spent with students through the SMART Mentoring program.

“I got involved with SMART because I realized that young African-American ladies where I’m from don’t have a lot of role models to look up to,” James said. “I wanted to help someone who might not think that they could make it to college understand that they actually can do it.”

SMART Mentoring, a program offered by the Carolina Center for Public Service in partnership with Volunteers for Youth, engages UNC undergraduate students and local middle-school students in mentoring relationships. The program targets students from low-income communities and focuses on issues of race, class and gender. Designed for highly motivated students who are committed to making a positive difference in the lives of youth, SMART mentors enroll in a fall three-credit hour course and a spring one-credit hour course offered in the Department of Sociology.

SMART Mentor Jonathan Buechner and his mentee.Buechner, who had mentors throughout high school and at UNC, said SMART helped him think about social inequality and the importance of investing in the younger generation. “SMART challenged me to go outside of my comfort zone and do something I never have done before. I hope I was a positive academic role model for Sol,” Buechner said. “His mom wanted someone to help him transition from elementary to middle school as well as to get him thinking about his future. I gave him tours of campus, had meals in the dining halls with my friends, did homework in the Union, and went to the Ackland Art Museum and various sporting events. I wanted him to get a ‘taste’ of college life and imagine himself here and see UNC (and college more broadly) as an attainable goal.”

Unique in its approach, SMART mentors are immersed in a two-semester program that explores issues of race, class and gender, particularly as they apply to youth.

“I was a chemistry major,” James said. “However once I got involved with SMART and took the sociology course Race, Class and Gender, I realized that there were other ways to help people. The courses showed me that a lot of people would strive to do better if they knew what opportunities would help them. This class, along with the sociology course Health and Society, sparked my interest in public health.”

Now a sociology major, James said the most important thing she learned as a SMART mentor is that by spending time with a young person, showing them that you care and exposing them to activities and ideas they may not be familiar with, can impact the way they view education and a future career.

Buechner added “I found SMART to be a unique program and a great way to get an in-depth service experience.
“I also met an outstanding cohort of classmates whose diverse backgrounds and perspectives enhanced my critical thinking skills. The program brought to light the value of mentors in helping young people develop into mature citizens of the world.”

Susan Worley, director of Volunteers for Youth said SMART mentors benefit the local community in many ways. “It’s hard to imagine, but there are lots of kids who have lived their whole lives in Chapel Hill and never been on the UNC campus. Having a chance to develop friendships with college students, do homework with their mentors in their dorm rooms, cheer on the Heels together at the Dean Dome, or share a treat at Yopo opens these kids’ eyes to a world of possibilities they may never have imagined.”

James, one of 18 UNC students who served as SMART mentors during the 2015-2016 academic year, said she felt the time she dedicated to her mentee was time well spent, benefitting them both in ways she did not expect.

Smart Mentoring“I believe I had a positive impact on Starrie,” James said. “Her mother shared with me that since being involved with SMART, Starrie doesn’t mind reading for homework, which she hated doing. She also has a more positive outlook on education.”

Mentoring through SMART also impacted the mentors.

“Being a part of SMART reaffirmed my interest in seeking a career in public service, “Buechner said. “By engaging in experiential learning outside of the classroom…I learned more about the structural barriers that low-income and minority communities face. I gained a first-hand perspective about what discrimination, racism and income inequality look like rather than just learning the statistics from a textbook.

“This experience also reaffirmed my passion for interacting with people of various backgrounds and learning their stories. I hope to pursue a career in which I can positively impact the lives of others and promote social change.”

With another academic year about to start, James will continue her involvement with SMART, assuming a leadership role as the program’s co-chair, planning and organizing SMART activities, and overseeing all mentor/mentee events. She also said she plans to stay connected to Starrie. “I look forward to exploring new adventures and places with Starrie this year and I hope to become even closer with her and her family.”

 

Twelfth class of Buckley Public Service Scholars honored at graduation event


Two hundred and seventeen seniors, all who dedicated themselves to service during their time at UNC, were honored as Buckley Public Service Scholars (BPSS) May 6 at a pre-graduation ceremony in Memorial Hall. All graduates received a Carolina blue and white cord to wear at commencement on May 8 to represent their achievement.

The program, part of the Carolina Center for Public Service, supports and strengthens Carolina students’ commitment to service by providing a framework to make a positive impact through service. BPSS participants build portfolios reflecting their learning and unique experiences throughout North Carolina, the nation and the world; connect to others who care about similar issues; and are involved in training and course work that make their service more effective. Launched in 2003, more than 10 percent of Carolina undergraduates are currently enrolled as BPSS participants, representing approximately 80 percent of majors on campus. The 2016 class of Buckley Public Service Scholars represent 45 North Carolina counties as well as 20 other states and China. The students being honored join the 1,941 past Buckley Public Service Scholars who have graduated since 2004, bringing the total number of scholars to 2,158.

“The Buckley Public Service Scholars program has been one of the highlights of my Carolina experience,” said Janell Smith, a member of the 2016 graduating class. “It has encouraged me to be an active member of the Carolina community, to intentionally reflect on my impact on the community, and to be grateful for the community’s impact on me.”

The 217 students graduating in the 2016 class of Buckley Public Service Scholars reported more than 98,000 hours of service as of April 2016. To receive formal recognition, BPSS participants must have a minimum grade-point average, document at least 300 hours of service, take one service-learning course, attend four skills-training workshops and complete a final reflection activity. Many of this year’s graduates surpassed these requirements, completing more than 450 hours of service on average. Five students reported more than 1,000 hours each, and one submitted more than 2,000 hours.

Since its inception, 7,984 students have participated in the BPSS program, contributing 1.5 million hours of service. This year, participating students reported service with more than 1,000 organizations like Student United Way, Refugee Support Center, Farmer FoodShare, Global Health Connections International and Relay For Life. Of the hours reported by this year’s graduates, 74 percent primarily benefited North Carolina, 12 percent other states and 14 percent other countries.

“A highlight of the work at the Carolina Center for Public Service is recognizing students who have dedicated themselves to making an impact, and this year is no exception,” said Lynn Blanchard, director of the Carolina Center for Public Service. “These seniors have been affiliated with a variety of campus and community organizations, demonstrating their commitment to others while building their own skills and gaining valuable experience. We congratulate them for making public service an integral part of their Carolina experience.”

BPSS is supported through the Walter White Buckley Jr. Endowment. For more information about each Buckley Public Service Scholar, visit https://ccps.unc.edu/files/2016/05/2016-BPSS_Grad_Bulletin.pdf.

 

2016 Buckley Public Service Scholar graduates by county, state and country: Photos available by request.

Alamance County – Julianne Blackburn, Rebecca McKee Jordan, Sara Ali Khan

Brunswick County – Elyse Marie Sulkey

Buncombe County – Katherine Cavagnini

Burke County – Jacob Anderson Ford

Cabarrus County – Noopur Doshi, Nicole Frey, Jade Hinsdale

Camden County – Miranda Kalbach, René Marcella Kronlage

Carteret County –  Hailey Louise Gosnell, Laura Amber Thomason

Caswell County – Keadija C. Wiley

Catawba County – Joy-Lynn Dawn Rhoton

Chatham County – Ashley Logan Andrews, Leslie Morales

Cleveland County – Spencer Gregory Byers *, Christiana Taylor

Columbus County – Kimberly Danielle Clarida

Craven County – Kayla Ann Schliewe, Katherinne Shannier Wawrzonek

Cumberland County – Courtney Elisabeth Bain, Leslie Samuel Bright III, Mercallis Edmund, Anika Hannan, Hanha L. Hobson, Reghan Katherine Horman, Sumanjit Mehmi, Shelby Elizabeth Miller, Conor Addison Winters

Davidson County – Rachel Nicole Woolridge

Duplin County – Virnaliz Jimenez

Durham County – Claire Louise Hannapel, Diane Nicole Leadbetter, Vianey Lemus Martinez, Danielle Luffman, Megan Nicole Stanley

Forsyth County – Carrie Lorraine Barlow, Emily Walker Hodgin, Ying Lin, Nastassja Ortiz

Gaston County – Ivana Chan,Amber Pritchard

Guilford County – Paris Caitlin Alston, Kierra Larue Campbell, Halah Flynn, Evelyn Alexandra Ford, James Thomas Gooding III, Morgan Lynn Herman, Lauren Hubner Howland, Ashley Karoline Joyce, Amanda Marie Kubic, Mridula Manoj, Temitope Olofintuyi, Caila Prendergast, Dasha Shaw, Brittany Nicole Simpson

Halifax County – Briana Nicole Macon

Harnett County – Haley Barefoot

Henderson County – Catherine Louise Swift

Iredell County – Molly Mason Bruce, Caroline Laurens deSaussure, Megan Seema Gurjar, Anissa Nicole Neal

Lee County – Anita Gandhi, Renisha Harris

Lenoir County – Daniel James Irvin, Angel Hannah Washington

Mecklenburg County – Callie Ann Bader, Sophie Grace Bergmann, Amber Marie Cassady, Connor Michael Choka, Casey Daniel Collins, Thalita Maria Cortes, Olivia DeSena, Rachel Virginia Hagerman, Emma Lee Hanmer, Nicole Lane Huntley, Catherine Jackson-Jordan, Mitchell Prescot Jester, Lara Liszka, Morgan Elizabeth Marin, Anna Meade, Merrick Robinson Osborne, Pranati Laxmi Panuganti, Gunjan Patel, Preeya Atul Patel, Gayatri Rathod, Destiny Rogers, Shauna Marie Rust, Hayden Elizabeth Schober, Erica Nicole Silvestri, Cecilia Maria Smetana, Jessica Wendy Stickel, Charlotte McIlwaine Story

Moore County – Hannah Suzanne Webster

New Hanover County – Alexis Danielle Akeyson

Northampton County – Kimberly Abigail Lassiter

Onslow County – Michael Glenn Morrison ll

Orange County – Shad Albarazanji, Emma Louise Armstrong-Carter, Erika Marie Clary, Michelle Nicole Gay, Lama Khalil Haidar, Cassandra Karlsson, Sarah Molina, Katherine Hannah Mulligan, Andrea Nicole Stewart, Grace Millard, McCollum Ware

Pitt County – Jerome M. Allen, Caroline Basnight Collier, Courtney Marie Hardy, Danielle Elizabeth McLaughlin, Kaitlyn Oakley

Polk County – Madison Murphy Alexander, Allison Clayton, Cade Warner Underwood, 

Randolph County – Ryan Jacob O’Hara, Ifra Rehman, Addie Schoenberger

Richmond County – Jamilah Dawkins

Rockingham County – Mary Katherine Ward

Rutherford County – Marie Claire O’Leary

Sampson County – Troy Kay Royal

Stokes County – Austin Chapman-Lovette Cromer

Surry County – Cory Eaton

Union County – Adeline Elise Dorough, Ariana Cecilia Gavin, Chisimdi Onwuteaka, Pooja Patel, Mary-Katherine Scheppegrell

Wake County – Saima A. Akbar, Kendall Adrianne Bagley, Marissa Bane, Michelle Brint, Caylin Rachel Bullock, Alia Brielle Capone, Sarah D. Chen, Nainisha Chintalapudi, Yasemin Canan Cole, Lorelei Claudette Feeny *, Chamara Anthony Fernando, Lauren Elizabeth Fulcher, Brianna Diane Gaddy, Lindsay Gorman, Apoorva Gupta *, Chelsea Gustafson, Atima Huria, Alexandra Eva Isaacs, Sloan Yvette Johnson, Laurel Ann Keefer, Yasmin Singh Khera, Tirumala Devi Kodavanti, Szu-Aun Lim, Christine Elizabeth Malarkey, Sara Kathryn Mayson, Sa’a Mohammed, Sarah Morton, Daniel Stuart Parker, Meredith Grace Parker, Scott Benjamin Parker, Radha Atul Patel *, Richa B. Patel, Chandler Rock, Sean Nicholas Ryan, Anushree Kristie Singh, Claire Smith, Jessica Faith Smith *, Julia D. Stroup, Kelly Rebecca Tan

Watauga County – Olivia Horton

Wayne County – David B. Joyner, Holly Pittard

Florida – Jourdan Jillian Black, Jacob Rhys Higdon, Yushan Wang

Georgia – Radha Piyush Patel, Hannah Christine Single, Melissa Swope, Courtney Elizabeth Turner

Illinois – Mia Lei, Katelyn Leigh McIntosh

Maine – Sean Kevin McClung

Maryland – Kimberly Ann Blasey *, Phanna Iamlek, Kamaara Jordan Lucas, Nia Chantelle Rush, Janell Kae Smith, Rhea Wyse

Michigan – Ajene Robinson-Burris

Mississippi – Helen Sophie Kyriakoudes

New Hampshire – Ian Michael Gallager

New Jersey – Emma Leigh Berry, Danny Rahal, Pallavi Surana

New York – Samantha Asofsky, Lynn-Indora Edmond, Victoria Lee Lai

Ohio – Katherine Wiley

Oklahoma – Alexander Dean Sherry

Pennsylvania – Julia Demarest, Jessica Lindsay Smith *

South Carolina – Olivia Sawh

Tennessee – Daniel Peters

Texas – Julia Katharine Baker, Jessye Lemley Halvorson, Hilda Isabel Santiago

Vermont – Daniel Peter Hogenkamp

Virginia – Elizabeth Stuart Agnew, Marnie Lalon Blalock, Katherine Anne Cordova, Jennifer Loraine Heyward, Geneva Sara Melquist Jost, Chloe Alistair Karlovich, Sarah R. McShane, Mihir Pershad

Washington, D.C. – Milan Noel Flanagan

Wisconsin – Dana Mansfield, Amandla Kesi Stanley

China – Le Feng

* Indicates December 2015 graduates.

Inaugural MacDonald Community Service Scholars begin their work

By Janell Smith

Edited cropped MacDonald ScholarsAs the nation’s first public university, public service is part of UNC’s mission. Now a new scholarship is helping to make service an integral part of students’ academic experience, too. The MacDonald Community Service Scholarship provides tuition support to a select group of four incoming students who have demonstrated a commitment to community service.

Anish Bhatia of New Hyde Park, New York; Maximiliano Flores-Palacios of Gastonia, North Carolina; Finn Loendorf of Stanley, North Carolina; and John Roberson of Durham, North Carolina were selected as the inaugural scholars.

The MacDonald Community Service Scholarship, renewable for four years, also enables students to participate in a unique series of programs focused on increasing their knowledge and skills related to community service.

“I never saw myself as someone who really went out of their way for community service,” Finn Leondorf said. “And I certainly never thought it could lead to something as exciting as the MacDonald Community Service Scholarship.”

In addition to the tuition scholarship, MacDonald Scholars are also enrolled in the Buckley Public Service Scholars program, which will help them develop their public service portfolios and skills related to community service. They are also part of the First-Year Service Corps and will complete 100 hours of service in their first year at Carolina alone.

In their third year, Leondorf, Flores-Palacios, Roberson and Bhatia will become MacDonald Community Fellows through the MacDonald Community Fellowship, where they will create individual public service projects and receive funding to implement the project. Their unique service projects will be completed by the time they graduate.

Though this seems like a tall order, these first-year students are not intimidated by the scholarship requirements.

“Ultimately, public service is an investment,” Max Flores-Palacios said. “Engaging in one’s community betters that community; not only for ourselves but also for future generations and I think that is what public service is about–building on our communities so that future generations can live in greater harmony.”

While the future seems far away for these inaugural MacDonald scholars, their career aspirations range from creating social entrepreneurial businesses to practicing social justice law to working in health professions. At the core of the each of their plans is to maintain a spirit of service.

“It’s important to me to be engaged in public service,” John Roberson said. “I have had many privileges growing up, socially, economically, geographically and so on, and there are far too many who did not and do not have those privileges.

“I think … it’s my responsibility to use my privilege, whether it be my money, time, voice or other resources, to help those without.”

In addition to their scholarship, these MacDonald Scholars will complete at least 1,000 hours of service over the next four years at Carolina. They also will receive training, mentorship and support in pursuing their particular public service interests.

“While I have always perceived public service as an external means of helping others in need,” Anish Bhatia said. “I, too, have benefited from activity within the community.

“To be recognized for that as a MacDonald Community Service Scholar at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is an incredible honor.”

Carolina receives commitment to launch new community service scholarships and fellowship program

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill announced today a commitment from alumnus Scott Douglas MacDonald of Del Mar, California, to support undergraduate students dedicated to public service.

His gift has a dual purpose, creating the Scott D. MacDonald Community Service Scholarships in the Office of Scholarships and Student Aid as well as the Scott D. MacDonald Community Service Fellowship Program in the Carolina Center for Public Service (CCPS).

Beginning this fall, MacDonald Community Service Scholarships are providing tuition support to a select group of four incoming students who have demonstrated a commitment to community service. The awards, which are renewable for four years, also provide resources to increase the students’ related knowledge and skills.

As third-year students, MacDonald Scholars and potentially other community service scholars will become eligible for Scott D. MacDonald Community Fellowships. The fellowship program will provide monetary support enabling students to work with faculty and staff to identify and implement a signature, experience-based public service project.

“I believe everyone who has graduated and been successful in part because of the education they received, has an obligation to help others who follow,” said MacDonald, a retired real estate executive who received a master’s degree in regional planning from Carolina in 1972. “I also believe there are many people who are in need and would benefit from the efforts of interested and socially motivated university students. These programs speak to both needs.”

The first four MacDonald Community Service Scholars are: Maximiliano Flores-Palacios of Gastonia, North Carolina; Finn Loendorf of Stanley, North Carolina; John Roberson of Durham, North Carolina; and Anish Bhatia of New Hyde Park, New York.

“Scott MacDonald’s generous gift will ensure that these and future students have life-changing public service experiences that they will take with them regardless of the career path they pursue,” said Lynn Blanchard, director of the CCPS. “They will learn as well as give, preparing them to leave Carolina committed and equipped to continue working for the betterment of society.”

MacDonald Scholar Flores-Palacios said he sees public service as an “investment.”

“Engaging in one’s community betters that community; not only for ourselves but also for future generations,” said Flores-Palacios. “I think that is what public service is about—building on our communities so that future generations can live in greater harmony.

During their four years at UNC-Chapel Hill, MacDonald Community Service Scholars and Fellows are expected to log at least 1,000 hours of service. Along with tuition support, they will receive training, mentorship and support in pursuing their particular public service interests.

“These students receive help and, in return, provide help,” said MacDonald. “It is a simple concept that could potentially change the way aid is funded and how communities are supported. This is just the beginning, and I salute UNC-Chapel Hill for leading the way. I hope other donors will follow by creating their own community service scholarships at Carolina.”

To learn more about creating a community service scholarship, contact Terri Hegeman, UNC-Chapel Hill’s director of development for scholarships, student aid and access, at 919-962-4385 or terri_hegeman@unc.edu.

http://www.unc.edu/campus-updates/carolina-receives-commitment-to-launch-new-community-service-scholarships-and-fellowship-program/