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Students Shine In President's Fellowship Program

Release Date:
8/9/2011 10:55 AM

Students Learn, Give Back Through the President's Fellowship Program

Jeantel Speruthia '13

Jeantel Speruthia '13 (right)

Jeantel Speruthia, ’13, spent her summer helping to develop activities for youngsters at the Creating Kids Childcare Center in New Haven. "Education does not only come from being in a classroom or reading a book," says Speruthia. "Community service creates character, and develops career options and goals."

The project was part of Speruthia’s involvement in the President’s Public Service Fellowship, an initiative that placed 14 students in local non-profit organizations and government agencies for the summer. The students will reflect on their experiences during a presentation on Tuesday, Aug. 16, at 9 a.m. in the Henry C. Lee Institute, Room 301.

It is the 13th year UNH has sponsored the program that is designed to help students develop leadership skills and an awareness of the needs of the community, as well as foster positive relationships within the Greater New Haven area. To be selected for a fellowship, students take part in an interview process and are awarded placements based on their interests and backgrounds.

Patrick Kelland '13

U.S. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro and Patrick Kelland '13

Patrick Kelland, ’13, worked in Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro’s office, where he's had the chance to interact with constituents who sought information on social security, immigration, health insurance and veteran’s affairs issues.

"I was hoping this would be my placement because I have a strong interest in politics, government and public service," says Kelland, a double major in political science and criminal justice. "The entire experience opened my eyes to issues that people face on a daily basis."

Jennifer Nolan '12

Jennifer Nolan '12 (left)

For her fellowship, Jennifer Nolan, '12, was part of a team working on the West Haven Emergency Operating Procedure. She collaborated with the West Haven fire districts and police department, as well as the Board of Education, Department of Transportation and Health Department.

"Thanks to the fellowship and the lessons I’ve learned, I have decided that an advanced degree in emergency management can prepare me for a variety of career opportunities that I never knew existed," says Nolan.

Vanessa Estime '13

Vanessa Estime '13

Vanessa Estime, ’13, spent the summer interacting with youngsters at Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services in New Haven. She helped coordinate a summer camp that provides a positive environment and learning opportunities for area refugee children.

"Community service gives you a chance to learn more about yourself," says Estime. "As students, we should view volunteering not as an obligation but rather an opportunity to learn more about those living in our neighborhood and serving their needs."

Shawn Tremblay '12

Shawn Tremblay '13 (far left) with fellow volunteers at the International Arts and Ideas Festival

"The community is just as much a part of the University of New Haven as its students, faculty and staff," adds fellowship participant, Shawn Tremblay, '12, who worked with the Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce. "We are fortunate to have such great relationships with the City of West Haven and the City of New Haven, and it is important that we, as students, do what we can to contribute."

A leader in experiential education, the University of New Haven provides its students with a valuable combination of solid liberal arts and real-world, hands-on professional training. Founded in 1920, UNH is a private, top-tier comprehensive university with an 80-acre main campus. The University has an enrollment of more than 5,900: approximately 1,700 graduate students and more than 4,200 undergraduates, 70 percent of whom reside in university housing. The University offers more than 80 undergraduate degrees and more than 25 graduate degrees through the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Business, the Henry C. Lee College of Criminal Justice and Forensic Sciences, the Tagliatela College of Engineering and University College. University of New Haven students study abroad through a variety of distinctive programs.