Presidents of universities across the country nominated 181 college student leaders for the 2013 class of Newman Civic Fellows. These students demonstrate personal commitment to creating lasting change for betterment of their communities. Through service, community-based research, and advocacy, the members of the 2013 class are making the most of their college experiences to better understand themselves and the root causes of some of the most pressing social issues that challenge us all. One of the winners is a student at Xavier University.
Meghan Marth of Symmes Township Cincinnati (45242), a junior in the Politics, Philosophy, and the Public honors program at Xavier University, sees access to education as a global issue. Her involvement with Unified for UNIFAT began in high school where she helped raise more than $60,000 in four years to pay expenses for 120 children to attend the Upper Nile Institute for Appropriate Technology (UNIFAT) in the war-torn region of Uganda. Marth supports the education of Northern Ugandan students by empowering their American counterparts through public policy advocacy and fundraising. Following trips to the UNIFAT School in Gulu during the summers of 2008 and 2010, Meghan formed and led the first chapter at Xavier University in 2011 and now serves on the Board of Directors for the non-profit. As the recipient of a four-year Community Engaged Fellowship at Xavier, Meghan continues to immerse herself abroad and domestically through her weekly service commitment. She embodies the Ignatian tenet of cura personalis and strives to be of service for others in all ways.
As a Newman Civic Fellow, Marth will join a network of Fellows around the country. Together Fellows will leverage an even greater capacity for service and change, and will continue to set examples for their classmates and others.
“Meghan is emblematic of our next generation of community service practitioners,” says Sean Rhiney, director of Xavier’s Eigel Center for Community-Engaged Learning. “Her passion and focus on access to education for youth has both international and domestic outcomes, from Uganda to Ohio. She will make the most of her inclusion in this important Fellowship community.”
“These students represent the next generation of public problem-solvers and civic leaders. They serve as national examples of the role that higher education can—and does—play in building a better world,” notes Campus Compact Board Chair James Dworkin, chancellor at Purdue University North Central.
Campus Compact is a national coalition of almost 1,200 college and university presidents—representing some 6 million+ students—who are committed to fulfilling the civic purposes of higher education, that is, to improve community life and to educate students for civic and social responsibility. For more information about the organization and the award, visit www.compact.org