2019 USU Presidential Community Engagement Award Recipients Announced
Four Utah State University community engagement champions and partners received USU Presidential Awards for Community Engagement last week during the annual banquet in the Taggart Student Center Skyroom. Each year, USU recognizes the work of outstanding faculty, staff, students and community partners that exemplifies collaboration between USU and the greater community for the mutually beneficial exchange of knowledge and resources in a context of partnership and reciprocity.?Awards were presented by the USU Center for Community Engagement whose mission is “Developing active citizens through community engagement and scholarship.”
Sachin Pavithran was nominated for the Community-Engaged Staff award for his tireless advocacy on behalf of persons with disabilities. He’s worked internationally, with federal agencies in the United States, with individual states and countless individuals and recently assumed the policy director roll in the Center for Persons with Disabilities. His work for CPD using a data-driven approach to advocacy for civil rights and inclusion at all levels of society makes USU a leader in giving people with disabilities a voice in public policy.
Scott Hammond was nominated for the Community-Engaged Faculty award. Hammond is a Regional Campus professor whose marketing research classes have done free consulting projects for 59 Utah businesses. Hammond and his students strive to make a real socioeconomic difference in communities throughout USU's Regional Campus system, and his MBA students completed 600 hours of community service and raised more than $23,000 for service projects in 2018.
Kara Bachman and Cassie Twiggs were both nominated for Community-Engaged Student awards. Bachman and Twiggs have provided the leadership needed to create The Campus Kitchen at USU (CKUSU). The program is part of the national Campus Kitchens Project, the leading nonprofit empowering students to fight hunger and food waste. Both students are AmeriCorps interns for the Student Sustainability Office. They have worked to address numerous food waste and student hunger issues while growing the student volunteer base for these efforts. Their service has also extended to community partners, most notably Sweeto Burrito that has become a zero-waste business. CKUSU has saved more than 1,500 pounds of food since opening this year, and plans to continue doing so for years to come.
Michael Bingham and the Jump the Moon Foundation were nominated as Community-Engaged Partner. Bingham established Jump the Moon Art Studio in 2017 and has been running the studio foundation ever since. Jump the Moon Foundation is an art gallery and vocational arts program dedicated to creating opportunities for artists with disabilities to make, market and earn income from their original and compelling artwork. In addition to earning income from art sales, artists build the skills, relationships and experience necessary for a successful career in the arts. USU students have been partnering with Jump the Moon since its inception through the Arts Access program.
Logan Mayor Holly Daines was nominated for the Community-Engaged Alumnus award. She could not attend the banquet as it coincided with the Logan City Council meeting. She was selected for the award because of her long-standing service to the Cache Valley Community and her advocacy for parks, trails and infrastructure. She also serves on the boards of the Downtown Alliance, Cache Metropolitan Planning Organization, County Trails Committee and has served on the CacheArts Board of Trustees.
Additionally, two students received outstanding service awards, four departments were designated as Community-Engaged Departments, and the graduating 2019 Community-Engaged Scholars and Val R. Christensen program directors were recognized.