Drake students, organizations earn state awards for community impact

Wednesday, April 26th, 2017

This photo of the Shabbat service at Des Moines' Temple B’nai Jeshurun appears in "A Spectrum of Faith," which published this spring via Drake Community Press (DCP). DCP recently won Iowa Campus Compact's Emerging Innovation Award.

Iowa Campus Compact honored several members of the Drake community today when they announced the winners of this year’s Engaged Campus Awards, which annually recognize students, organizations, faculty, staff, and alumni who have built community-campus partnerships, community service programs, service-learning courses, and lead institutional engagement. More than 50 nominations were received from 14 colleges and universities across the state of Iowa; Drake received two top awards and six honorable mentions.

Jamie Willer received IACC’s Student Leadership Award.

Jamie Willer, a senior sociology major with an academic concentration in social justice in urban education, received IACC’s Student Leadership Award. Willer served as a service-learning ambassador in Drake’s Office of Community Engaged Learning. She is a founding member of the Community Action Board and has served as the board’s president for two consecutive years. She is passionate about engaging students in meaningful service to help create a more equitable and just society.

Drake Community Press, a unique small-press publisher that includes student and faculty collaborators from several academic disciplines, received the Emerging Innovation Award. Drake Community Press recently published its third book, A Spectrum of Faith: Religions of the World in America’s Heartland, which features 15 central Iowa faith communities through beautiful photography and engaging information. The book raises awareness of religious and cultural diversity in the Midwest, and highlights the role of Iowa’s immigration policies and practices in fostering such diversity. More than 60 students worked alongside faculty members and community members for two years to complete the book, which launched April 6.

Drake also received honorary mentions for the following categories:

Civic Mission Leadership:  Renee Sedlacek, director of community engaged learning

Community Leadership:  Drake alumna Emily Lang, Urban Leadership Academy Instructor and RunDSM co-founder

Emerging Leadership: Laura Kieran, associate professor of special education

Emerging Innovation: Drake University Engaged Citizen Corps

Network Choice Student Organization: Next Course Food Recovery

National Service Member of the Year: Jeffrey Czerwiec, AmeriCorps VISTA member

“These honorees are using creativity, hard work and innovation to better connect communities and campuses in ways that deepen student learning and impact critical needs,” said Emily Shields, executive director of Iowa Campus Compact.

ICC is a statewide association of college and university presidents providing leadership for the civic mission of higher education and strengthening the capacity of member colleges and universities to prepare all students to become engaged citizens. is a statewide association of college and university presidents providing leadership for the civic mission of higher education and strengthening the capacity of our member colleges and universities to prepare all students to become engaged citizens. Learn more about their work and all the honorees at www.iacampuscompact.org. 

Awards will be presented at the annual Engaged Campus Awards Lunch on May 3, 2017 at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden. The lunch will include a keynote speech by Dr. Timothy Eatman, co-director of Imagining America, an organization dedicated to engaging higher education artists, scholars, and designers in transforming society for the better. Attendees are also invited to participate in a summit on the civic mission of higher education.

Next Course | Food Recovery Network at Drake University

Ever heard of food recovery? Next Course is a branch of the Food Recovery Network at Drake University in Iowa, and we're making a difference in our school's environmental impact, as well as in the Des Moines community through our food recovery initiatives.

Learn how you can get involved at https://www.foodrecoverynetwork.org/iowa#DU

Posted by Next Course - Food Recovery Network at Drake on Wednesday, April 26, 2017

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