The Extraordinary Community Service award honors students and student organizations that exhibit the Volunteer spirit in the community.
Students and Organizations
Katherine Bolton, of Knoxville, is a senior in nursing. For the past two years, she has invested much of herself in a large-scale effort designed to bring comfort to those who have suffered the devastating loss of a newborn. She has been the student representative for the Student Nurses Association and philanthropy chair for its Precious Prints project. Precious Prints is a partnership between the UT College of Nursing and area hospitals to provide grieving families with a silver pendant bearing a fingerprint of the child they have lost. Bolton has shepherded the project since it began and led many fundraising efforts to expand it from one to three hospitals. Along with communicating directly with hospital administrators, she’s led the effort to train more than 100 nurses on how to acquire a child’s print.
Scarlett Bowman is a senior in supply chain management from Hendersonville, Tennessee. Her passion for service began as a participant in one of UT’s Alternative Break programs. She caught the fever and moved into leadership roles to assume more responsibility for the service project and student development experience. She’s been a trip leader and, more recently, a student coordinator. She has also served as a peer mentor for the Haslam College of Business and as a welcome leader during UT’s Welcome Week activities.
Corey Hodge, of Powell, Tennessee, is a senior majoring in Africana studies and English education. Passionate about serving and being a voice for underrepresented populations, he’s a resident assistant and has served as a peer mentor for Project GRAD. In January, he organized “Break the Silence,” an event that helped bring awareness to people whose voices are not often heard. More than fifteen campus organizations participated, along with several from the Knoxville community. Hodge recently served as the only student panelist at the forum “From Selma to Ferguson: The Movement Continues,” held earlier this year. He was honored to share the stage with nationally renowned activists who had marched with Martin Luther King Jr. in Selma, Alabama.
Laquesha Wilson, of Antioch, Tennessee, is a senior in sociology and interdisciplinary studies. She’s been on a quest to help the community’s youth realize their full potential. She started as a volunteer for Tribe One, which provides free after-school tutoring and activities for elementary school students in East Knoxville. That experience led to reading to children through the Imagination Library. Wilson now tutors students at Bearden Middle School through the AVID tutor program. She has also connected high school and UT students through Upward Bound, Project GRAD, Me4UT, and the Multicultural Mentoring Program.
Society of Physics Students
The Society of Physics Students is a professional association dedicated to helping others and providing its members with opportunities to serve the community. It is open to any student with an interest in physics. The SPS takes part in many community outreach programs, including the Saturday Science Club program at Pond Gap Elementary, a student-run science day camp held once a month. Chapter members also share their love of science through dynamic demonstrations at downtown’s Market Square. The demos are geared toward children but are enjoyed by all. The organization has been featured at the Central Program Council’s Vol Night Long events. The chapter’s activities and accomplishments led to national recognition in 2014.
Student Nurses Association
The Student Nurses Association is a professional student organization based in the College of Nursing. Its members have made significant contributions to the community, including more than more than 500 hours of service at the Love Kitchen. One of its most meaningful endeavors is the growing Precious Prints project, which provides a silver pendant to families who have suffered the loss of a child at birth. More than 180 families have been touched by the project since it began, and it now serves families from three hospitals.