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2017 President’s Undergraduate Humanitarian of the Year Awards Luncheon

(From Top Left to Bottom Right) Ramon Aleman, Provost Sally McRorie, Steve Lizano, Katherine May, Neil Sood, Joe Pelt, Emma Harmon, Jena Martino, Emilie Easton, Terry Beck, Saleshia Ellis, Brittany Sinitch, Catherine Christine Timm and Jocelyn Riedl.

(From Top Left to Bottom Right) Ramon Aleman, Provost Sally McRorie, Steve Lizano, Katherine May, Neil Sood, Joe Pelt, Emma Harmon, Jena Martino, Emilie Easton, Terry Beck, Saleshia Ellis, Brittany Sinitch, Catherine Christine Timm and Jocelyn Riedl.

2017 President’s Undergraduate Humanitarian of the Year Awards Luncheon

On March 22, student humanitarians were recognized at an awards luncheon hosted by FSU President Thrasher, the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, and the Center for Leadership and Social Change. The President’s Undergraduate Humanitarian of the Year Award is a prestigious award that recognizes students who exhibit tremendous commitment to service. Each school or college selects one student to be the Humanitarian of the Year. Students receive $200 that is donated in their name to the nonprofit agency of their choice. Finally, at the Leadership Awards Night on April 11, the student who best exemplifies commitment to service is named the President’s Undergraduate Humanitarian of the Year, and an additional $1,000 is given as a donation to the nonprofit agency of their choice.

This year’s 2017 Humanitarians of the Year are:

Katherine May, College of Applied Studies

Katherine is a senior from Greenwood, Florida. Much of Katherine’s service has focused on providing meals and services to Greenwood community members through Chipola Christian Ministries, an organization that tirelessly works to eliminate poverty, neglect, abuse, and hunger.

Joe Pelt, College of Arts & Sciences

Joe is a junior from Perry, Florida. Joe founded The Well Ride, an organization that raised funds to bring a water well to the Tigray Region of Ethiopia, and helped form Akadi Educate, an organization that sponsors student education, through graduation, in the Volta Region of Ghana.

Ramon Aleman, College of Business

Ramon is a senior from Miami, Florida. In addition to his work through the Global Peace Exchange in Haiti and Cambodia, Ramon founded Unhoused Humanity, an organization that shares stories and identifies partners, raising money for families experiencing homelessness.

Catherine Christine Timm, College of Communication & Information

Christy is a senior from Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. Christy’s most meaningful service experience has been with Faithful Servant Missions, traveling to the community of Bajo Tejares, Costa Rica, and teaching children to speak English and adults how to write.  

Emilie Easton, College of Criminology & Criminal Justice

Emilie is a junior from Temperance, Michigan. Through her Global Scholars experience teaching English in Bolivia, she learned about children and families in the prison system. Emilie expanded her service to this population, helping socialize children and teach life skills.   

Brittany Sinitch, College of Education

Brittany is a senior from Coral Springs, Florida. In addition to her service as President of the Council of Teachers of English, Brittany has served with Dance Marathon for three years, working primarily with recruitment, uniting our campus community For The Kids. 

Jena Martino, College of Engineering

Jena is a senior from Naples, Florida. Jena has been involved with Engineers Without Borders for three years, culminating in her current role as President. Through EWB, she has helped develop sustainable engineering solutions with communities in Panama and Guatemala.

Jocelyn Riedl, College of Fine Arts

Jocelyn is a senior from Lake Placid, New York. Jocelyn has bridged community needs, her passion for art, and her experience as a Navy veteran. Through the Peace Papers project, she helps military veterans pulp their uniforms, resulting in useful and meaningful paper projects.

Neil Sood, College of Human Sciences

Neil is a senior from Jacksonville, Florida. In addition to tutoring in math and science and mentoring pre-health students, Neil worked with Project Nepal as a part of the Global Peace Exchange, teaching English in a rural village in Nepal and contributing to sustainable community development.

Terry Beck, College of Motion Picture Arts

Terry is a junior from Navarre, Florida. After losing a friend to violence, Terry developed two documentaries, highlighting the grief process and working to end violence towards women. His own experience with arthritis motivates his service with children with auto-immune conditions.

Emma Harmon, College of Music

Emma is a junior from Orlando, Florida. Emma’s service includes working with elders as Community Ambassador for Project LOVE and mentoring youth via Capital City Youth Services. She bridges her passions for music and education at Leon County Schools, focusing on low-SES children. 

Steve Lizano, College of Nursing

Steve is a senior from Pembroke Pines, Florida. As a nursing student, Steve has applied his classroom knowledge to community needs, working with a migrant community in Immokalee to identify healthcare needs, advocate for patients, and provide healthcare screenings.

Saleshia Ellis, College of Social Sciences & Public Policy

Saleshia is a sophomore from Fort Pierce, Florida. Motivated by her own experiences, Saleshia aims to empower low-income communities of color via youth mentoring at the Palmer Munroe Teen Center, free tax preparation with IMPACT America, and research on #BlackGirlMagic.

For more information about the President’s Undergraduate Humanitarian of the Year Award, please visit http://thecenter.fsu.edu/recognition/presidents-undergraduate-humanitarian-year-award