|For immediate use||
April 22, 2005 -- No. 198
Local angles: Baltimore; Cary; Clyde; Dallas, Texas; Durham; Fort Pierce, Fla.; Greensboro; Highlands; Kernersville; Lenoir; Lisle, Ill.; Rutherfordton; Wilmington; Winston-Salem
UNC honors first class of Public Service Scholars;
program has produced 26,644 hours of service this year
CHAPEL HILL -- The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hillís Carolina Center for Public Service honored the first class of Public Service Scholar Program graduates at a reception last evening (April 21) on the campus.
Family and friends of the 15 graduating scholars, along with university officials and the community agency representatives for whom the scholars have worked, attended the reception to honor the scholars.
The reception offered the graduating scholars a chance to reflect on their experiences throughout the program. They received certificates signed by Chancellor James Moeser and the centerís director, Dr. Lynn Blanchard. Dr. Carol Tresolini, associate provost for academic initiatives, spoke.
In addressing the graduates, Blanchard said, "You are pioneers of this exciting program. You have not only demonstrated your commitment to making a difference, you also have set a standard for generations of Carolina students who will follow."
The Public Service Scholars Program, which began in 2003, provides a framework for service, connects students who care about similar issues and guides participants through training that can make their service more effective.
The scholars have completed a minimum of 300 hours of service, taken at least two service-learning courses and attended skills-training workshops. Although requirements for the program include a minimum grade-point average of 2.5, all 15 graduates have a 3.0 or higher.
Graduating scholars will receive recognition at the commencement ceremony in May, as well as official recognition on their transcripts. Each graduating scholar will also wear a blue and white cord at graduation to represent his or her designation as a Public Service Scholar.
More than 450 students are presently enrolled in the program, and to date, they have reported 26,644 hours of service this academic year. Participants have worked in a wide array of efforts and agencies including nursing homes, hospitals, public schools, the Special Olympics, the Animal Protection Society, Family Violence Prevention Center, Habitat for Humanity and the Big Buddy mentoring program.
The class of 2005 Public Service Scholars includes: Judy Chang, Jennifer C. Duke, Kevin Feltes, Joseph Hoyle, Jovian Irvin, Wesley Joines, Genevieve Florence King, Lauren Kucirka, Jennifer Manis, Briana Snyder, Elizabeth Sonntag, Catherine Norah Kirby Tanner, Denny Wilkerson, Claire S. Young and Shirin Elyse Zarrinnam.
The Carolina Center for Public Service leads UNCís engagement efforts and service to the state of North Carolina and beyond by linking the expertise and energy of faculty, staff, and students to the needs of the people.
Following is a list of the 15 program graduates, with their hometowns, major, record of service while at UNC and post-graduation plans:
- Judy Chang of Greensboro is a double major in nutrition and biology. Chang has participated in fund-raising for the N.C. Childrenís Hospital through the UNC Dance Marathon and provided health education through the UNC School of Public Health-affiliated N.C. Prevention Partners and World Camp for Kids. Changís post-graduation plan is to join the Peace Corps.
- Jennifer C. Duke of Wilmington is a double major in political science and sociology. She has interned with Judge Susan C. Taylor in Union County, led a Girl Scout troop and served as vice president of the N.C. Student Legislature. Dukeís post-graduation plan is to attend UNCís School of Law this fall.
- Kevin Feltes of Lisle, Ill., is a double major in public policy and economics. He has taught English as a Second Language through UNCís Campus Y Literacy Project, worked with the Inter-Faith Council Crisis Intervention Center to provide food and financial aid, and participated in UNCís APPLES Service-Learning Alternative Spring Break. Feltesí post-graduation plan is to work as a research analyst for a New York economic consulting firm.
- Joseph Hoyle of Durham is a biostatistics major. He has tutored Hispanic students in Durham Public Schools, worked at Pregnancy Support Services and been a regular plasma/platelet donor for the UNC Health Care System. He recently received the J. Maryon Saunders Award, honoring contributions towards loyalty and goodwill between UNC and its students, alumni and friends. Hoyleís post-graduation plan is to attend medical school, but he will first spend time in Guanajuato, Mexico.
- Jovian Zayne Irvin of Winston-Salem is a psychology major. She was UNCís 2005 senior class president and also volunteered with Communiversity at UNCís Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History, the Special Olympics, and as a youth tutor and mentor. Earlier this month, she received the E. Eugene Jackson Senior Class Award, given to the member of the graduating class whose leadership and selfless dedication have strengthened class pride and university loyalty, enriched the lives of seniors and made the most significant contribution to the university. Irvinís post-graduation plan is to work with either Centex Homes or at the Center for Creative Leadership.
- Wesley Joines of Lenoir is a double major in public policy analysis and business administration. He has interned in social marketing-fund development with N.C. Prevention Partners, served as a support group facilitator and buddy for the Mental Health Association of Orange County, and helped enroll uninsured children in the State Childrenís Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) through UNCís Student Health OUTreach (SHOUT) organization. Joinesí post-graduation plan is to work with a health policy research firm or a nonprofit agency.
- Genevieve Florence King of Clyde is majoring in anthropology, with a minor in social and economic justice. She has been active in UNCís APPLES Service-Learning Program and Student Government, serving as co-chairwoman of the Public Service and Advocacy Committee; conducted educational camps in Malawi through World Camp for Kids; and volunteered regularly at the Inter-Faith Council Crisis Intervention Center. She recently received an Edward Kidder Graham Award for her work with Student Government. Kingís post-graduation plan is to work in the nonprofit sector before attending graduate school.
- Lauren Kucirka of Kernersville is a double major in biology and anthropology. Her service has centered on health issues, and she has worked in a Honduran hospital through Solidaridad, served as in intern at the UNC Health Careís Womenís Health Information Center and provided help with nontraditional HIV testing through the Chatham Social Health Council. Kucirkaís post-graduation plan is to attend graduate school.
- Jennifer Manis of Fort Pierce, Fla., is majoring in English, with a minor in social and economic justice. She worked with preschoolers at Sunrise Corner, prepared meals for individuals with HIV through Project Open Hand, provided support to the homeless through APPLES Service-Learning Alternative Spring Break and Lutheran Family Services members and helped build a community center in Costa Rica. She hopes to serve in the Peace Corps following graduation.
- Briana L. Snyder of Baltimore is majoring in ancient and medieval history. She has volunteered at UNC Hospitals and worked with young people through HYPE (Helping Youth by Providing Enrichment) and Capital Breakthrough. Snyder post-graduation plan includes either medical school or working at the Wilmer Eye Institute at the Johns Hopkins University Hospital.
- Elizabeth C. Sonntag of Cary is a public health major. In her work with the Campus Y, she helped raise the funds for the building renovation, coordinated the collection of 70,000 pounds of food for the N.C Food Bank through Beat Hunger Beat Duke, and organized the Catalyst Conference, a weekend social justice conference for rural N.C. high school students. She was recently presented with the Frank Porter Graham Award, given to the graduating senior who has made the most outstanding contribution to a realization of the human ideals of equality, dignity and community. Sonntagís post-graduation plan is to work in New York City for Teach for America.
- Catherine Norah Kirby Tanner of Rutherfordton is majoring in biology, with a minor in chemistry. She has been president of the UNC Outing Club, interned in a Nicaraguan hospital through the Foundation for Sustainable Development and been a regular volunteer at UNC Hospitals. She will enter UNCís School of Medicine in August.
- Denny Wilkerson of Durham is a double major in philosophy and psychology. She has worked with the preschool program of Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools, provided a camp experience for children living in an orphanage and provided service through alternative spring break trips, leading the 2004 effort.
- Claire S. Young of Highlands is majoring in international studies, with a minor in cognitive science. She has worked with K-12 International Outreach, the Refugee Womenís Microenterprise and A New Day Juvenile Day Reporting Center. As the recipient of a national Harry Truman Scholarship, she will have a summer internship in Washington, D.C., and travel nationwide giving presentations on modern Egypt in elementary schools and Rotary Clubs. Youngís post-graduation plan is to work in a field related to Middle Eastern studies before beginning graduate studies in law and diplomacy.
- Shirin Elyse Zarrinnam of Dallas, Texas, is a double major in psychology and sociology. Her service projects include health promotion efforts through teen pregnancy prevention and Tutoring Against Tobacco, and she has also served with UNCís General Alumni Association student membership program. Zarrinnamís post-graduation plan is to continue working at Residential Services Inc.
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Carolina Center for Public Service contact: Lynn Blanchard, (919) 843-7568 or email@example.com
News Services contact: Deb Saine, (919) 962-8415 or firstname.lastname@example.org