(Posted March 24, 2022)

HUNTINGDON, Pa.— Campus Compact, a national coalition of colleges and universities working to advance the public purposes of higher education, has named 173 student civic leaders who will make up the organization’s 2022-2023 cohort of Newman Civic Fellows. Brandie Ray ’22 of Tyrone, Pa., will join students from 38 states, Washington, D.C., and Mexico to form the cohort.

The Newman Civic Fellowship recognizes students who stand out for their commitment to creating positive change in communities locally and around the world. The fellowship is named for the late Frank Newman, one of Campus Compact’s founders, who was a tireless advocate for civic engagement in higher education. In the spirit of Dr. Newman’s leadership, fellows are nominated by Campus Compact member presidents and chancellors, who are invited to select one outstanding student from their campus each year.

“I feel as if service to others is life’s most pressing and important question. I ask myself often if how I’m living and what I value supports the success, prosperity, and happiness of everybody in their unique, lived experiences,” said Ray. “I don’t think of service in terms of inspiration, but the fact that I have the passion and determination to do better by others. It wouldn’t be right to stand by and do nothing if I know I have this capability within my personality, values, and capabilities to serve.”

Ray plans to attend medical school and obtain a master’s degree in public health following graduation from Juniata. Service to individuals and communities is central to their personal values whether inside or outside a clinical space. As a leader on and off-campus, Ray expressed gratitude for the opportunities for leadership Juniata has provided.

“Juniata has always been marked by the influence of students. Many of the large changes, important events, and the culture of Juniata has been shaped by the students who have gone here,” Ray said. “Juniata is very oriented around the leadership of its students—so that makes it much easier to be heard and have an impact for certain initiatives.”

Through the fellowship, Campus Compact will provide these students with a year of learning and networking opportunities that emphasize personal, professional, and civic growth. Each year, fellows participate in numerous virtual training and networking opportunities to help provide them with the skills and connections they need to create large-scale positive change. The cornerstone of the fellowship is the Annual Convening of Fellows, which offers intensive skill-building and networking over the course of two days. The fellowship also provides fellows with pathways to apply for exclusive scholarship and post-graduate opportunities.

“Brandie is dedicated, diligent, and determined. While pursuing a double POE (program of emphasis) in Biochemistry and Public Health Advocacy, being an EMT with the local ambulance authority, and participating in student organizations and social justice projects, Brandie maintains a 3.8 GPA,” said Juniata College President James A. Troha. “They pride themselves on going the extra mile, being a team player, and not working to receive praise for their work. Their passion for serving and celebrating members of underserved and underrepresented communities shines clearly through their very being.”

Ray was nominated for the Newman Civic Fellowship by Dr. Crystal Sellers-Battle, Dean of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion at Juniata.

“We are proud to name such an outstanding and diverse group of students Newman Civic Fellows,” said Campus Compact President Bobbie Laur. “Their passion and resolve to take action on the wide range of issues challenging our neighborhoods and communities is inspiring and deeply needed. We cannot wait to engage with them through this transformative experience.”

The Newman Civic Fellowship program is supported by the KPMG Foundation. Learn more at compact.org/newman-civic-fellowship. You can read more about each of the student leaders selected for this year’s cohort at compact.org/newman-civic-fellowship/the-2022-2023-newman-civic-fellows.

Campus Compact is a national coalition of colleges and universities committed to the public purposes of higher education. Campus Compact supports institutions in fulfilling their public purposes by deepening their ability to improve community life and to educate students for civic and social responsibility. As the largest national higher education association dedicated solely to campus-based civic engagement, we provide professional development to administrators and faculty to enable them to engage effectively, facilitate national partnerships connecting campuses with key issues in their local communities, build pilot programs to test and refine promising models in engaged teaching and scholarship, celebrate and cultivate student civic leadership, and convene higher education institutions and partners beyond higher education to share knowledge and develop collective capacity. Visit www.compact.org.

Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.