The award recognizes students at Montana Campus Compact (MTCC) affiliate campuses whose exceptional service work makes meaningful differences in the lives of others, while they are pursuing a degree or certificate.
This fall, 39 students applied for the competitive scholarship, each accomplishing exemplary service and making significant positive change in their institutions, communities and the world.
Recipients of the awards include:
Angela Boyce, a sophomore at Flathead Valley Community College working toward a General Studies degree with an emphasis in Nursing.
Boyce’s main volunteer activity since she started at FVCC is as a hospice volunteer, spending time with patients and providing primary caregiver respite. She has also been a volunteer/apprentice doula and midwife, offering services to low income women. Her goal is to become a Nurse Midwife after completing a Master’s degree in nursing.
“I believe the well-being of an individual has a strong ripple effect on the community,” Boyce said.
Hailey Lee Eakin, a junior at the University of Montana, majoring in Social Work and Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies with a minor in Nonprofit Administration.
“Volunteering and devoting my time to community issues has enriched my life and strengthened my connection to my community as well as deepened my understanding of the systematic roots or cyclical patterns of many social issues such as poverty, homelessness, and racism. It is very rewarding to use what I have learned in the classroom to meet tangible needs in my community,” Eakin said.
According to a friend and mentor Hailey is a committed activist in her community as well as in her personal life. She has risen above her own personal challenges and strives to return what she has been given. Her current volunteer efforts are primarily with Montana Women Vote and fundraising efforts with Triota, the National Women’s Studies Honor Society. She has also spent her last two summers as a member of AmeriCorps and VISTA working with low income populations through the Missoula Food Bank and the YWCA Pathways Program. She hopes to use her education to create a non-profit organization that provides services for LGBTQ foster youth.
Ronald Martin, a sophomore at Fort Peck Community College majoring in Business Technology.
According to Elijah Hopkins, VP of Student Services at Fort Peck Community College, “Ronald Martin engages in community service because he understands the critical need. He grew up in an area of Cleveland, Ohio were gangs and street violence were commonplace. He believes community service is necessary to create positive influencers, attributing his commitment to community service to the Rainey Institute – a Cleveland nonprofit that changed his life.”
Martin’s main volunteer activities are through the Native Pathway’s to College Bridge Program at FPCC. His belief in the importance of education to change one’s life for the better enables him to make direct connections with students, where he is a positive role model. He dreams of creating his own nonprofit before the age of 27, and starting a foundation that will help put over one million students through school.
“My vision is to encourage, motivate and uplift children in at risk environments to do better and follow their goals no matter what! I want to see everyone make it in life and won’t stop until I change more lives than days I spend on this earth,” Martin said.
Adrianna Pittman, a freshman at the University of Montana Western majoring in Secondary Education Math and Science.
Adrianna began her volunteer activities with 4-H long before she entered college. Through 4-H this past year she started a “Go Green” project that focuses on pollution and the overuse of plastics. She also volunteers as a math and science tutor and as a softball coach for young girls. She plans to use her education to become a high school math or science teacher, while also working to improve the environment.
“I want to inspire kids through my teaching to follow their dreams,” Pittman said.
Kaia Roberge, a sophomore at Carroll College majoring in Sociology.
Roberge volunteers many hours each month at the Friendship Center, a women’s shelter and resource center for victims of sexual assault and domestic violence in Helena. After attending a 70-hour training to be a victim’s advocate, she volunteers for 65-hour shifts on the Hotline. As the first person an assault victim speaks to, she listens and empowers them to make the best decisions regarding the next steps. Her volunteer work ranges from answering the hotline to accompanying rape victims to the hospital, or locating emergency housing at all hours of the day and night.
“I would like to imagine a world in which humans respect each other and treat others equally. To me, this would specifically manifest in gender equality,“ Roberge said.
Stori Smith, a sophomore at Montana State University majoring in Conservation Biology and Ecology.
Smith is a passionate conservationist and for the past 18 months has spent many hours volunteering with SNow (Sustainability Now) and Bounty of the Bridgers food pantry. Through SNow she has helped bring awareness of food waste to the MSU dining halls. Through the club’s effort the dining hall is now composting to keep food out of the waste stream. She has also helped in organizing ongoing clothing swaps where proceeds go towards purchasing laundry bags that prevent clothes plastics from entering water systems. Through Bounty of the Bridgers, Smith has helped open a food pantry where every Saturday, anyone affiliated with MSU can come and take whatever free food they need, no questions asked. The food is collected locally from stores, restaurants and bakeries – food that would otherwise have entered the waste stream.
“I’m learning how community involvement works and how effective it can be, even on a small scale. I watch the university’s waste shrink by sending food to a compost bin. Rather than use their finite funds, students can find new clothes through the clothing swap. Day-old bakery bread goes to someone’s next meal instead of needlessly going to a trash bin,” Smith said.
For more information about Campus Compact’s programs and initiatives, please visit mtcompact.org