BSC Office of Communications

News from the Hilltop

May 11, 2009

Birmingham-Southern students receive service-learning, volunteer awards

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.— Birmingham-Southern students Krysten Matthews of Florence and Will Jackson of Heflin received Bunting Center Volunteer of the Year Awards. Students Miriam Smith of Mountain Brook and Vishwanath Danthuluri of Madison received Bunting Center Servant Leader Awards. All were presented during the college's 2009 Honors Day Convocation.

The Bunting Center Volunteer of the Year Award is given to student participants in the ongoing service-learning projects of the BSC Bunting Center for Engaged Study and Community Action who go above and beyond in their community work. Students are nominated by project coordinators based on their commitment to and involvement with the projects.

The Bunting Center Servant Leader Award is usually reserved for seniors who best embody servant leadership.

Danthuluri, an interdisciplinary biology/psychology major and the son of Naga and Sita Danthuluri, has initiated and served as a student coordinator for two separate projects with IMPACT, Alabama's vision screening program, and Piper Place, a day program for men and women with mental disorders. He also served as the senior reflection officer for the Mozambique service-learning Interim project in January 2009.

Jackson, a freshman biology major and the son of Wayne and Linda Jackson, joined International Tutoring in the fall and volunteered to take over for the coordinator of the program during the January Interim term.

Matthews, a freshman undeclared major and the daughter of Ryan and Amy Matthews, volunteered at First Light women's shelter weekly and displayed a genuine love and enthusiasm for the women and children residents of the shelter.

Smith, an English major and the daughter of Nathan and Nancy Smith, has continually demonstrated her commitment to community involvement during her time at BSC. In addition to coordinating the tutoring program at Woodlawn High School, she served as an officer on three service-learning Interim projects in San Francisco, Chennai, India, and the Black Belt of Alabama. She is a member of the West End Community Church Without Walls.

Established in 2007 with a gift from Dr. Peter and Derry Bunting and building on more than two decades of successful service-learning, the BSC Bunting Center embodies the belief of philosopher and educator John Dewey that “the purpose of education is to make the world a better place.” It offers a variety of ongoing local projects with community partners, alternative spring break programs, and course-based service-learning experiences during the college's regular and Interim terms.

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