Eigel Center

Current Fellows

Xavier Community Engaged Fellows Make Their Mark at the All Honors Celebration!

Six Community Engaged Fellows in a group during All Honors Day
Five Community Engaged Fellows inside Bellarmine Chapel
Two Community Engaged Fellows inside Bellarmine Chapel with their awards
Group of Community Engaged Fellows smiling together on All Honors Day

 This year marked the in-person return to the annual All Honor’s Day celebration which recognizes Xavier students for excellence in and out of the classroom.  We’re proud that our Fellows continue to demonstrate academic and leadership excellence in addition to their important commitments to community service and engagement.   

At the Academic Honor’s Convocation, our graduating seniors received their Xavier Community Engaged Fellow’s Medals, and the following Fellows earned academic honors from their departments:

  • Biology Award – Sarah Ray
  • Karl P. Wentersdorf Shakespeare Award – Caroline Dziubek
  • Yamuna Kachru Award – Caroline Dziubek
  • Francis I. Hammel Psychology Award – Benjamin Foley
  • Financial Executives International Outstanding Student Award – Madeline Anderson

The following Fellows were also recognized at the Student Leadership Assembly for their outstanding contributions to campus and community:

  • Charles J. Ping Student Community Service Award - Jaime Misky
  • Silver X-Key Achievement Award - Emma Mitsch and Jared Vornhagen
  • Gold X-Key Achievement Award - Mercy Torres and Michaele Townsend
  • Fr. Francis J. Finn, S.J. Award- Sarah Ray
  • President’s Award for Excellence in Leadership – Tessa Doan

Check out the Eigel Center on Instagram and Facebook for more information on our Community Engaged Fellows! 

Alumni List


Madeline Anderson

Year: Senior
Major: Philosophy, Politics, and The Public
Hometown: Indianapolis, IN
Service Sites: Friar's Club, Moriah Pie

"Ralph Waldo Emerson once said: 'To know that even one life had breathed easier because you have lived. That is to have succeeded.' Thus, service to me means that we never stop trying to make a positive impact in the lives of those around us. This is done through small things, the things that often go unnoticed. This shows that we do not need to go out and change the world on a large scale to make a difference but we can make a difference in our own back yard. In general, service to me is what we are all here to do it is to simply be there for others."

Annabella Collins

Year: Senior
Major: Nursing
Hometown: Mason, OH
Service Sites: Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Lydia's House, Moriah Pie, Academy of World Languages

"People have always been something that I have had a deep passion for. Meaningful human interaction is the sole reason that drives me to get out of bed each morning. It encourages me to be outgoing when I often don’t want to be and to love when it is sometimes hard. The opportunities that I have been given to work alongside and to make connections with others is a privilege, and I couldn't possibly imagine living my life in any other way. It is what empowers my soul. Service is not a job nor a duty, but an opportunity to flourish. An opportunity for transformation and self-growth, opening my eyes and awakening my soul to a new perspective or a way of life. It is an experience that often teaches me how to love others in a new way, and how to walk with and for others. And in this aspect, there is true beauty."

‘The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others,’ - Mahatma Gandhi

Caroline Dziubek

Year: Senior
Major: English
Hometown: Toledo, OH
Service Sites: Women Helping Women, Ladies of Awesomeness, Children's Creative Corner

'I don’t want my thoughts to die with me, I want to have done something. I want to leave something behind. I want to make a positive contribution – know that my life has meaning.' - Temple Grandin.

"In my experience, I have learned that service can be disappointing, frustrating, and more than anything, extremely painful. Such a pursuit will not fail to break your heart. But service is not a burden. It is a necessity. A broken heart is not a story you tell. It is a call to action. I seek to dedicate myself to service because inaction is a luxury that I am offered due to my chance privilege in this life. Action is my conscious effort to understand and connect with those who have not been given such a chance, which is part of my greater goal: to act with empathy in all realms of my life, for both myself and for others."

Tyler Forbes

Year: Senior
Major: Sport Management
Hometown: Beverly Hills, MI
Service Sites: Children's Creative Corner

'There is no higher religion than human service. To work for the common good is the greatest creed.' - Woodrow Wilson.

"When I serve others it gives me a feeling like none other. I understand the importance of being a part of something bigger than myself and working alongside others to achieve a common goal. The joy that we can bring to others through service is the best form of payment in the world.”

Ciara Lambert

Year: Senior
Major: Philosophy, Politics, and The Public
Hometown: Buffalo, NY
Service Sites: Lydia's House, Cincinnati Squash Academy

"Service has always been one of the greatest constants in my life. It has given me the opportunity to connect with different communities and has shaped the social justice issues that I am passionate about. Sometimes, service comes with discomfort but you have to remember the greater good and that the purpose goes far beyond yourself. Learning, growing and acting with others will always have a lasting, positive impact. It is an unconditional kindness that will never fail to better yourself and the people around you. Furthermore, service is a social responsibility that fosters a sense of community and serves as a catalyst for self-growth."

Gabriela Salazar

Year: Senior
Major: Business Analytics
Hometown: San Antonio, TX
Service Sites: Children's Creative Corner

"Exposure to different areas across the United States has taught me that if I want to make a positive impact, I do not have to look much farther than my own community. Sometimes the areas that need the most attention are the ones in which you live and engage with every day. Service with others ignites a light in me and provides me with a sense of purpose. When I interact with others, I seek to enrich their lives while learning and growing alongside them. I enjoy advocating for unrepresented communities and service acts as a bridge that unites people from different backgrounds who share a similar goal. Shannon L. Alder stated, 'One of the most important things you can do on this earth is to let people know they are not alone.' Service is more than physical contributions, it is also the priceless intangible and emotional bonds formed where joy, love, and kindness can be found."

Susmita Subba

Year: Senior
Major: Physics
Hometown: Cincinnati, OH
Service Sites: Children's Creative Corner, Bhutanese Community of Cincinnati

“Being born and raised in a refugee camp has taught me to always seek to help others even when I do not have much to offer. To me, service is a way of life. I believe, one way to positively impact and contribute to my community is through social service. I do service, not for myself but for the betterment of others. Service gives me a purpose and true meaning to be alive in this world."

Mercedes Torres

Year: Senior
Major: Social Work
Hometown: Wauseon, OH
Service Sites: Children's Creative Corner, Evanston Academy

“As a social justice advocate, I consider it my duty to serve the community. Through service, I plan to work with others, not for others. I plan to focus on solidarity, not superiority. I plan to focus on engaging in communities and creating genuine relationships. I plan to put intersectionality into practice in order to advocate for individuals and communities who encounter intersecting forms of discrimination and systematic injustices.”


Rhea Goodwyn

Year: Junior
Major: Political Science
Hometown: Milwaukee, WI
Service Sites: Salvation Army, Lydia's House 

"I strive to serve with compassion and integrity in order to fully connect with the community. Having an open mind allows me to learn more about others."

Emma Mitsch

Year: Junior
Major: Entrepreneurial Studies
Hometown: Cincinnati, OH
Service Sites: Healthy Homes

"I once met a man who told me his son was hospitalized and so he lost his job and was eventually evicted. This man happily received a plate of dinner from me, and a cross from a basket of which I had been passing necklaces out. After the man finished his plate, he asked me to have a few more crosses for his friends, 'to give them something to believe in.' Of course, I handed them to him and hadn't thought much of it. It wasn't until that night when I realized that that is what I have been trying to do my whole life - to give someone something to believe in. Service is often made into a complex mixture of boundaries and hours required. But that night service was just a way to learn about someone and make the world a better place with them alongside you. Service and rocket science are two very different things. Service is giving someone something to believe in. It is waking up early to drive a friend somewhere on a day you planned to sleep in. Service is holding the door for ten people instead of brushing it as you walk by. Pure servitude is never an active thought, but something that lives inside of you. An awareness of humankind." 

Lizzy Roeding

Year: Junior
Major: Philosophy, Politics, and The Public
Hometown: Fort Thomas, KY
Service Sites: SVdP Poverty Simulation, Women Helping Women

'Without community service, we would not have a strong quality of life. It's important to the person who serves as well as the recipient. It's the way in which we ourselves grow and develop.' - Dorothy Height.

"Service allows me to be for and with others. It requires working together through listening, advocacy, and celebration to grow relationships with communities around me. Service is important for my growth and pushes me to learn more about communities and cultures for which I am unfamiliar. Service is not charity work; it is cultivating a deep relationship with yourself and others. By viewing service in this way, the community can thrive. We must show love and respect for all people or else we fail in being advocates for each other and working toward inclusivity."

Jared Vornhagen

Year: Junior
Major: Psychology
Hometown: Nolensville, TN
Service Sites: Ohio Innocence Project, Hamilton County Youth Court

"True service and true engagement extend beyond the time one is physically present in the community they work with. True engagement is building genuine relationships and connections with the people and communities one serves, making it so service is done with others and not just for others. True service is blended into one's daily life, where being conscious of and advocating for the needs and rights of others is a natural instinct. Ultimately, my philosophy of service is rooted in the pursuit of justice and equity for all, whether that be in the criminal justice system or the many other parts of our society plagued with systemic inequity. I strive to utilize my own skill set while also recognizing the strengths and resources that each person in every community has to offer so that we can best work together to address root causes of injustice in a variety of areas and bring about meaningful systemic change."

Raya Williams

Year: Junior
Major: Business Analytics & Information Systems
Hometown: Oak Park, IL
Service Sites: St. Vincent DePaul

"Jackie Robinson once said, 'A life is not important except in its impact on other lives.' My goal is to be a leader that impacts the lives of many, inspires change, and to always have the courage to do what's moral. Service to me is the sharing of your gifts and knowledge for the advancement of someone other than yourself. Taking the time to support in any way that I can, while encouraging someone to dream beyond their imagination, is the true measure of success. According to Audrey Hepburn, 'As your grow older, you will discover you have two hands: one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.' That said, I plan to spend my life using both hands in service of others, as I believe to whom much is given, much is expected."


Molly Babcock

Year: Sophomore
Major: Philosophy, Politics, and the Public 
Hometown: Frankfort, IL
Service Sites: Casa de Paz, Lydia's House, Refugee Mentoring (Catholic Charities Southwestern Ohio)

"Father Greg Boyle once said, 'Compassion is not a relationship between the wounded and the healer. It is a covenant between equals.' When I think of service, the first word that comes to mind is compassion. Service is about being committed to listening more than speaking. Service is about empathy over sympathy. Service is about commonality over difference.

To truly emphasize what community engagement means to me, I find it necessary to tell a quick story about a man who changed the way in which I view service. This man, Eric, proved to me that two people with completely opposite backgrounds, identities, and races, could come together to share in life's mall beauties. I experienced the uniting nature of small acts of kindness and acknowledgement. During summer, I chose to volunteer at a food bank as a server to the public. Throughout the days of volunteering, I started to recognize the same faces day after day. I got to know the people, their experiences, and on a smaller scale, what type of food they would usually say yes to me putting on their plate. I began to feel a sense of community with the people with whom I volunteered, and the people on the other side of the food distribution. One day in June, an older man came in, went through the line, and came back to where I was serving the fruits and vegetables for the day. He said that he hadn't seen me around before and wanted to meet me. We exchanged names, a couple laughs, and went on our way. The next day, he came in, smiled, and exclaimed, "Molly! I am so glad to see you here again! How are you?" I was so happy he remembered me. I could tell by the look on his face that he started his sentence with my name in order to see if I would remember his. Such a simple thing. A name. Yet our name is an important piece of our identity. I responded with, "Eric!" In that moment, his face lit up and he grinned from ear to ear. "You remembered!" he exclaimed. This mutual recognition made both of us feel valued.

Through this was a small encounter, it instilled in me a feeling and realization that I will never forget. In that moment I understood that we need to take the time to acknowledge each other. Simple acts of recognition can turn someone's day around. Every day he came in, he would ask me how I was doing, even though his struggles outweighed my own. I learned that though Eric and I were completely different regarding age, race, the area in which we grew up, and our current experiences, we came together because we recognized one another, and this mutual recognition gave both of us dignity as human beings. Eric is a man I will never forget because of the lesson he taught me. Our shared humanity unites us."

Grace Bourneuf

Year: Sophomore
Major: Philosophy, Politics, and the Public 
Hometown: Lake Geneva, WI
Service Sites: Casa de Paz, Cincinnati Squash Academy, Music Resource Center

"John Lewis once said, 'Lean toward the whispers of your own heart, discover the universal truth, and follow its dictates. Hold only love, only peace in your heart.' I believe that as an individual, I have the right to serve, support, and love each and every person I may encounter in my life. I believe that my truth is knowing that by standing with others, for others, I am made a more authentic human being. I acknowledge that it is my duty, my responsibility to become an active member in my community, and by doing so I hope to bring peace and comfort to those around me."

Tez Brown

Year: Sophomore
Major: Biomedical Sciences 
Hometown: Orville, OH
Service Sites: Academy of World Languages, Boys to Men, Cincinnati Squash Academy

1. 'If you don't stand for something you will fall for anything.' - Malcom X
2. "As I devote time and compassion to my service, I stand for a greater purpose in which I believe to always be open minded to receive current information or past experiences. When it comes to our youth, they are our future. If we can have a positive influence and impact on those who may never thought of thinking or altering their rituals then I can say we have helped a portion to our future society."

Alton Jenkins

Year: Sophomore
Major: Sport Marketing
Hometown: Dorchester Ctr, MA
Service Sites: Academy of World Languages, Casa de Paz, Evanston Academy

 'Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced' - James Baldwin.   
This quote from James Baldwin - a revolutionary thinker and believer, has always motivated me. For as long as I can remember, service has been an integral part of my life. No matter the outlet of that service - youth mentoring, food drives - I recognize that it must be done if I want any sort of impact. The foundation for me is this; Who will face the struggles of our world, and who will solve them? The beautiful craft that is the community engagement was born out of dedication of strong and loving leaders. They recognized that service was not about what you could take away. It was about how you could wholeheartedly give back to those around you. It was because of these brave individuals in my community, that I was not only inspired, but called to action. I am determined to allow my time within the Fellowship to mold my vision with compassion and benevolence.

Ethan Nichols

Year: Sophomore
Major: Philosophy, Politics, and the Public 
Hometown: Cincinnati, OH
Service Sites: Cincinnati Squash Academy, Life of the World, Music Resource Center

'Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.' - Howard Zinn

"In high school I was able to find myself through service to others. It was ingrained in me from a very young age, when I first joined Cub Scouts. Having spent a decade in the scouting program, and being an Eagle Scout, I was taught that service to others is an essential part of life. I think the importance of small acts, starting with the individual, is vital. Cause when we all commit ourselves to serving each other and standing in solidarity, we really can transform the world."

Olivia Smith

Year: Sophomore
Major: Business Undecided
Hometown: Florissant, MO
Service Sites: Academy of World Languages, Ladies of Awesomeness, Lydia's House

'Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms.' 1 Peter 4:10

"My life has always been surrounded by my faith. Services comes along with being devoted to Christ. Service is about giving back to others. I see service as an opportunity to change someone's life. From a young age I've always been taught to speak up and make a difference where I could. I serve because others are not able to and my contribution could bridge a gap between societal issues."


Josh Fieger

Year: First Year 
Hometown: Cincinnati, Ohio 

"Service is the best way to meet a new face and build a relationship. To me that is what service is all about, building together as a group and learning new aspects of life that would be hidden without it. Service allows me to connect to communities and learn new ideas by engaging with people. My first step in serving a community is engaging myself in that community and understanding their needs. Everyone can offer something special, and service is the best way to find that something. Further, service is a way of life that continues day to day. Therefore, it is important to truly care about and love the people around you because that willingness to sacrifice brings joy like no other.” 

Jordan Harris

Year: First Year 
Major: Nursing 
Hometown: Columbia, Maryland 

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” - Mahatma Gandhi   

"This quote is the motivation and inspiration for my service. There are so many people in this world that need assistance and often I find myself asking “why aren’t there a multitude of people helping those asking for support?” I recognize that service begins with me, and I have the power to make a positive impact in the world. I have a responsibility to those in need and I hope that through my work of service, I can be a catalyst for change. I want to inspire others to use their own gifts and talents to contribute to the transformation of a society where unity, love, and human dignity are elevated. I strive to be an example to all through my action, word, and deed so that I can make a positive impact in someone’s life. I participate in service because while it can inspire others to follow, there is always personal growth found through the process. When exposed to different communities and cultures from various backgrounds, I gain deeper insights into the world around me, and establish a greater connection with those I serve. May we always share our gifts and talents to help those less fortunate and have a willingness to be an example for all the world to see." 

Jaiden Jennings

Year: First Year 
Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky  

"Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth." - Muhammad Ali 

“This quote truly embodies my reasoning and beliefs on working with others. I think that community service is an obligation, and you can’t say you love your community unless you are actively doing things to make it better. Being immersed in my community makes me feel like I am loving others to the best of my ability. When I interact with others, I am treating them how I want to be treated. I serve with the intention of showing and spreading love, to have an impact that shows support to others constantly.” 

Molly Kantz

Year: First Year 
Hometown: Fairport, New York 

“World peace can be achieved when the power of love replaces the love of power." - Sri Chinmoy Kumar Ghose 

"Practicing humble service is essential to Jesus’ invitation to follow him. Through the many stories of his ministry to others throughout the Gospels, he invites us to recognize that everyone deserves love, equity, and justice. I recognize today that this is one reason my parents have always emphasized the importance of connecting with others – not just by having a short conversation, but by developing authentic relationships. Volunteering is one of my favorite ways to do this. My introduction to the world of volunteering was at a shelter for women and children facing homelessness, domestic violence, addiction, and various mental and physical illnesses. 
Growing up volunteering there, I learned to treat everyone as family. Choosing the 'power of love' enables me to act with humble service towards others, and that’s where authentic relationships and 'world peace' begin." 

Joel Lacoste

Year: First Year 
Hometown: Brunswick, Ohio 

"We have the power to make this the best generation of mankind in the history of the world- or make it the last." - John F Kennedy 

"The idea that not all superhero's wear capes is the understanding that everyday people, rather than our stereotypical childhood superheroes, are capable of making a difference. However, it has never been the idea of a cape or mask that motivated me to take action and strive to better my community; rather, it was my honest, unending desire to serve the needs of the greater good. My desire to serve my community now, and to serve my country in the future is an extension of these desires. Superheroes are the ones that help others when times are hardest, and although I'm no Bruce Wayne or Peter Parker, I know that truly anyone can make an impact equally significant. Ultimately, we don't need superpowers to serve others. We just need to be better than we were yesterday." 

Jordan Madry

Year: First Year 
Hometown: Pickerington, Ohio 

Macy Melero

Year: First Year 
Hometown: Fenton, Michigan 

"I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do." - Edward Everett Hale 

"To me, service has always been a constant in my life. My favorite thing to do has always been creating meaningful connections with others, and service has always allowed me to do so. So many hardships can plague a person’s life; when you turn on the news at the end of the day and hear how much negativity surrounds today's world, it is hard to remember how much good we have in our lives. Volunteering my time to service projects has always allowed me to affirm my faith in my community and surroundings and allowed me to give back to the communities that have given me so much. No matter what circumstances, a person should never have to walk alone, and service is my way of trying to make someone's day a little brighter." 

Michael Rentmeester

Year: First Year 
Hometown: Wauwatosa, Wisconsin 

“Everybody can be great … because anybody can serve” - Martin Luther King Jr. 

"For me, service is a way to connect with others. It does not have to be complicated or grand. Service is a way to lift people up simply by listening and caring and loving. Through my service I strive to be present and available, sharing my gifts and talents where needed and openly receiving the gifts of others. Greatness cannot be an individual effort. It requires community. Serving one another in mutual love and respect is enacting God’s will and building the foundation for great change."