Over the last few weeks, Florida Campus Compact has highlighted each of the 13 Florida students named as 2015 Newman Civic Fellows. Nominated by their college or university presidents, the Newman Civic Fellows are the next generation of public problem solvers and civic leaders. They have demonstrated an investment in finding solutions for challenges facing communities and creating lasting change. Congratulations to all of these outstanding students!
Today, we’d like to recognize:
June Wambua, St. Thomas University
June Wambua, a political science and international relations major at St. Thomas University, has been committed to social change since she was a young girl growing up in Kenya. Inspired by the conditions in her community, she actively works to ensure that future generations have access to basic needs and quality education. Locally she has worked with marginalized communities providing positive alternatives and outreach to increase graduation rates and to decrease substance abuse. Working with the city council, June is gaining experience through community-based research on city policies in order to help shape her goals of becoming a civically engaged lawyer. Internationally, she serves as a leader of Operation Soles, a youth program in Kenya, organizing fund raising activities to supply basic education needs (clothes, books, shoes, etc). Working in Kenya and Tanzania June conducted research to examine the root causes of health issues in this unique demographic. Through working toward examining root causes, June has inspired her fellow students, faculty and staff to move beyond service toward deep engagement.
-Franklyn Casale, President
My passion to be engaged in my community started when I was a young girl. It was no surprise that my love for civic engagement followed me into college. I grew up in a poor community in Kenya, Africa, and that but fueled me to ensure that the generations after me do not go through the same conditions. Someone once told me, “If you love what you do, you will never get weary of doing it.” Impacting my immediate surroundings has been my largest satisfaction. I have served as a mentor not only for my home church but also at the city hall, advising high school students as they transition to their college and career paths. Additionally, I worked with underprivileged youth in Kenya by providing positive alternatives and outreach services to deter them from dropping out of school or turning to drugs. With these skills and experiences, I hope to develop community awareness activities such as fundraising to help underprivileged kids and provide home goods for my community church outreach. I hope to use my leadership and community engagement skills as a platform for awareness, being able to make positive impacts not only locally but also globally.