Annual Awards Luncheon

SPIRIT OF SERVICE
The Spirit of Service award is designated for two non-graduating students who have been involved in community service and have demonstrated a sense of caring, concern and willingness to be involved in addressing community issues.  This year we received many impressive nominations and as is tradition, two students were selected.

Our first Spirit of Service Award winner is Aly Kozacek.  Aly’s list of activities demonstrates depth and breadth of commitment:

  • Rainbow Therapeutic Riding Center
  • Prince William Hospital
  • Dream Catchers Therapeutic Riding Center
  • The co-founder of United Against Infectious Diseases
  • CARE for AIDS internship
  • And Phi Sigma Pi honor fraternity service chair where you have coordinated numerous activities for members

But more, your depth of commitment is evident in the comments from her nominator from Prince William Hospital.  She writes, “Aly’s work ethic is truly remarkable.  We all found her to be incredibly dependable, trustworthy and honest.  Her compassion and concern for others was demonstrated every time she was with patients.”

For these reasons it is our honor to award Aly Kozacek with the Spirit of Service Award.

Our second recipient is equally dedicated to her community.

OCES 010Andrea Lin is the site leader at Williamsburg Landing, she volunteers at Olde Towne Medical Center and she tutors with College Partnership for Kids and Student Peer Advisory Network.  Andrea wrote, “I chose to attend William and Mary because of its strong commitment to community.  My William and Mary story is directly related to my community engagement.”

Your nominator wrote, “When Andrea approached us about starting a volunteer program at Williamsburg Landing, it was well received by all.  Andrea successfully recruited and now organizes forty students to visit each week.  The program would not have been possible without Andrea’s strong passion for geriatric care.”

We are so proud that you have made William and Mary the place to call your home.

TRADITION OF SERVICE AWARD

The Tradition of Service Award is given annually to one graduating senior that has been involved in significant community activities throughout their college experience.   This year two recipients have been selected.

Our first Tradition of Service award winner is Anna Mahalak.

OCES 011Anna your list of community activity and engaged scholarship sets you apart from peers.  You were a Sharpe scholar, a Branch Out participant and Relay for Life team captain your freshman year.  You were then a research assistant in Dr. Charity-Hudley’s linguistics research lab and a community studies fellow during your sophomore year.  During your junior year you were a team member for the Bosnia Project, a Sharpe Fellow and you designed a research project entitled, “Nonviolent Communication in Youth educational Programming.”  This year you are a teaching fellow for the Bosnia Project, a Sharpe Fellow, an academic coach in high schools, Vice President of ODK and more.

In your essay you reflected, “My experience in classes has taught me how institutions, such as education, shape politics.  I have gained insight on how power over institutions shapes society.  My classes have provided greater meaning to the role of the education system in political socialization and multicultural understanding.”

Your insights epitomize the role of the active citizen and the engaged scholar. It is with great pride that I present you with the 2012 Tradition of Service Award.

Our second award winner is equally dedicated in her academic pursuits and community action.

Anna Dausman, you were selected to co-facilitate the International Justice Mission during your freshman year.  You continued to lead IJM during your sophomore year while conducting a research project on the importance of Swahili and other heritage language programs at the college level.  You were selected as a Branch Out site leader and successfully led students on an alternative break that addressed urban educational inequalities.  That summer you volunteered with a children’s home in Kenya.  Junior year you continued to lead IJM, you again lead a Branch Out alternative Break and you tutored with Literacy for Life.  This year you founded and led the Kenya Sustainable Village Project partnering with a pediatric HIV/ADIS relief organization in Kenya.  You served as the Branch Out alternative breaks national student director and provided training for 24 site leaders.  You volunteer with FISH food pantry and ARC of Williamsburg and you will work for Break Away after graduation.

In your application essay you wrote, “At William and Mary I have come to learn that as an active citizen and a person pursuing social justice, I will act differently.  My peers and professors have challenged me to imagine the ways in which I might contribute my academic strengths and interests to pursue those paths.”  You conclude by reporting, “I entered the College as a student and volunteer, I graduate voluntarily committing my life to the pursuit of healthier communities and a shared responsibility in addressing inequalities at their roots.”  Your College is so proud of you.

by Drew Stelljes, Ph.D.