Iowa college students receive national recognition for civic engagement leadership

August 11, 2016
Five Iowa students were nominated by their college and university presidents for the 2016 Campus Compact Newman Civic Fellows Award for their excellence in civic engagement leadership. These students are among the 218 students chosen nationally to receive this award, which honors the late Frank Newman, one of Campus Compact’s founders and a tireless advocate for the civic engagement of higher education.

​The 2016 Iowa recipients were Nichole Wiese of Buena Vista University, Laura Leben of Drake University, Rachel Kilburg of Loras College, Shelby Yates of University of Northern Iowa, and Jamie Harrings of Warburg College. These students were selected for the 2016 Newman Civic Fellows award because they stood out among their peers.

President Martin of Drake University chose Laura Leben for her “relentless drive and dedication to the interrelated issues of social justice, environmental integrity, and food captures the attention of her peers and inspires those around her to join in.”

President Moore of Buena Vista University nominated Nichole Wiese because of her leadership of BV Buddies, which “has grown and changed over the years based on her determination to make it better and always to keep the focus on the youth that they mentor. We have seen tremendous growth in the youth that were served.”

​All of the fellows have served in leadership roles connecting their peers to community service opportunities locally, nationally, and abroad. They have led service trips, fundraising efforts, K-12 outreach, social entrepreneurship programs, environmental advocacy efforts, and more.

Nichole Wiese and Jamie Harrings both serve in the Iowa College AmeriCorps Program (ICAP), which is another great way to demonstrate leadership and build capacity on their campuses. Shelby Yates helped the University of Northern Iowa to secure a grant with our MLK Day of Service Community Partnership Project.

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Campus Compact 2016 Newman Civic Fellows will represent their higher education institution in a national group of student leaders. These students will receive an award certificate and an invitation to join the Newman Civic Fellows online network. They will also be featured prominently on the Campus Compact national website and recognized at the Engaged Campus Awards event on May 31 at the University of Iowa.

Click here for more information on each awardee including their personal statement, nominating information and a picture. Campus Compact is grateful to the KPMG Foundation and Newman’s Own Foundation for their support of the 2016 Newman Civic Fellows Award.