HSU Senior Wins National Award for Civic Activism

Humboldt State University senior Jennifer Alejo has been named a 2013 Newman Civic Fellow by Campus Compact, the national coalition of almost 1,200 college and university presidents dedicated exclusively to campus-based civic engagement.

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Jennifer Alejo.

Alejo founded Finding Resources and Empowerment through Education (F.R.E.E.), a club to build support for undocumented students. Through her leadership, Humboldt State recently created an Undocumented Students Task Force, charged with examining and recommending policy and practice changes that will make the campus more accessible and inclusive.

Alejo also organized a College Ready Conference for local high school students, directed HSU’s Alternative Spring Break (food distribution in Los Angeles) contributed 500 hours of community service as an Americorps member and coordinated a one-unit class for Take Back the Night.

Nominating Alejo, Humboldt State President Rollin Richmond said, “Jennifer’s selfless leadership and activism embody the spirit of the Newman Civic Fellows Award and they have been a boon to students, staff, faculty and the greater Redwood Coast community.”

The winner of Humboldt State’s Al Elpusan Award for Student Activism in Spring 2012, Alejo has spearheaded a number of Diversity Program Funding Grants. They supported the Men’s Story Project (lending a voice to young men of color on campus) and a campus presentation this year by the labor leader and civil rights activist Dolores Huerta, co-founder of the United Farm Workers with César Chávez.

Alejo is among 180 students from 36 states named Newman Civic Fellows for 2013 as next-generation public problem solvers and civic leaders. Campus Compact’s membership includes public, private, two- and four-year institutions across the spectrum of higher education. This year’s schools represented along with Humboldt State include Berkeley, Bryn Mawr, Dartmouth, Georgetown, Ithaca College, Montana State, New England College, Purdue, Rochester Institute of Technology, San Francisco State, Stanford, Tulane, University of Missouri-St. Louis and Vanderbilt.

Campus Compact fosters public and community service that develops students’ citizenship skills, forges community/campus partnerships and provides resources and training for faculty who integrate civic- and community-based learning into their curriculum.

For details, click on compact.org.