ELON—Appalachian State University senior Amanda Moore is the recipient of the 2013 John H. Barnhill Civic Trailblazer Award. Given annually by North Carolina Campus Compact, a statewide association of colleges and universities committed to community engagement, the Barnhill Award recognizes one college senior in the state who has created and led innovative projects that address community needs.
In her four years at Appalachian, Moore has gone from small-town volunteer to an activist and organizer who calls herself a “global citizen.” She became involved in community service as a high-school student in Bayboro, N.C. (population 750), but she credits an alternative break trip to Costa Rica her freshman year with sparking her interest in human rights.
The trip “literally changed my life,” Moore recalls. “I had never been out of the country before, so this experience opened up my eyes and helped to provide me with direction for the rest of my college career.”
Moore went on to start the school’s Amnesty International and International Justice Mission chapters, coordinate the university’s first Social Justice Week to address topics like the death penalty and drug policy, and work with faculty to establish a proposed Center for Social Justice and Human Rights. She has led students on domestic and international service trips like the one that inspired her, worked with non-profits in Eastern Europe and Southeast Asia, and conducted research in the area of genocide studies, presenting her work at a meeting of the Association of Genocide Scholars in Italy.
Her work has benefitted the Boone area as well. She completed 300 hours of AmeriCorps service with the Watauga Humane Society and organized an annual “Walk-A-Puppy” fundraiser to support the organization. She was one of the first participants in the university’s Board Fellows program, which places undergraduates on the advisory boards of local non-profits. Moore was a board member of Horse Helpers, which rescues abandoned and neglected animals, and she supported the organization by coordinating service-learning projects and spearheading a $10,000 fundraising campaign.
Moore has been involved with numerous other civic ventures through Appalachian and the Community Together (ACT), the office that coordinates the university’s community service and service-learning programs. A double major in communications and global studies with a 3.99 GPA, Moore will graduate as the university’s first “Citizen Scholar” in December. Sponsored by the ACT office, the Citizen Scholar Certificate Program honors students who have participated in a significant number of service-learning courses throughout their collegiate career and have distinguished themselves by demonstrating an outstanding level of commitment to civic leadership and social responsibility.
Moore’s future plans include graduate school and work for an organization dedicated to human rights.
“Amanda knows that her education brings with it responsibilities to improve the world … and she has never hesitated to act on that knowledge,” said Dr. Clark Maddux, director of civic engagement at ACT.
The Barnhill Award is named for John H. Barnhill, who founded innovative student service programs while a student at Elon University and who later became the founding executive director of North Carolina Campus Compact. The award is presented at the compact’s annual conference for students involved in community service. Now in its 20th year, the conference will be held Nov. 2 at Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte. More than 175 student leaders from 27 campuses in three states will attend.
About North Carolina Campus Compact
North Carolina Campus Compact is a statewide association of nearly 40 colleges and universities that seek to develop civically engaged students and strengthen communities. Presidents and chancellors commit their institutions to being “engaged campuses” that enhance a student’s sense of responsibility, citizenship, and leadership and that impact the community by partnering with local organizations to address real needs. Appalachian’s Chancellor Kenneth E. Peacock has chaired the compact’s board since 2008. For more information about the compact, member campuses, the Barnhill Award, or the student conference, visit http://www.nccampuscompact.org.