North Central Missouri College student Alyssa Olson honored as Newman Civic Fellow

Alyssa Olson

Campus Compact, a Boston-based non-profit organization working to advance the public purposes of higher education, has announced the 290 students who will make up the organization’s 2021-2022 cohort of Newman Civic Fellows. Alyssa Olson, a North Central Missouri College student, will join 212 students from 39 states, Washington, D.C., and Mexico to form the 2021 cohort. 

The Newman Civic Fellowship is a year-long program for students from Campus Compact member institutions. The students selected for the fellowship are leaders on their campuses who demonstrate a commitment to finding solutions for challenges facing communities locally, nationally, and internationally. 

Alyssa, from Cainsville, MO, is pursuing an Associate in Arts in Teaching degree at NCMC. She is actively involved as a Peer Tutor with the Trio Student Support Services program and a member of Phi Mu which she participates in various community improvement and volunteer projects. After completing her associate’s degree, Alyssa plans to transfer to Northwest Missouri State University to complete her bachelor’s in secondary education. Growing up as a foster child, she hopes to use her future role as a teacher and coach to support other teens in need.  

“We are honored to have Alyssa represent North Central Missouri College as a Newman Civic Fellow,” said Vice President of Student Affairs, Dr. Kristen Alley. “As a fellow, Alyssa will have the opportunity to engage with other students across the country, build a network of successful student leaders, and continue to develop and enhance her leadership skills. As a future teacher, Alyssa will play a key leadership role in her community. She will have the opportunity to make a positive impact in the lives of many children, and we know she will both learn and contribute to this experience as she engages with other civic-minded students across the nation.”  

The fellowship is named for the late Frank Newman, one of Campus Compact’s founders, who was a tireless advocate for civic engagement in higher education. In the spirit of Dr. Newman’s leadership, Campus Compact member presidents and chancellors nominate student leaders from their campuses to be named Newman Civic Fellows. 

“Alyssa’s invaluable perspective as a youth in foster care and her drive to help other children facing similar challenges, paired with the leadership development opportunities that await her as a Newman Civic Fellow, places her in a wonderful position to effect positive change in her community,” said Tocarra Williams, Student Support Services Assistant Director. “As Alyssa’s mentor, I look forward to supporting her growth as a public-spirited problem solver.” 

Through the fellowship, Campus Compact provides Fellows with a variety of learning and networking opportunities that emphasize personal, professional, and civic growth. Each year, fellows participate in numerous virtual training and networking opportunities to help provide them with the skills and connections they need to create large-scale positive change. The cornerstone of the fellowship is the Annual Convening of Fellows, which offers intensive skill-building and networking over the course of two days. The fellowship also provides fellows with pathways to apply for exclusive scholarship and post-graduate opportunities. 

“We are proud to recognize these extraordinary student leaders and thrilled to engage with them,” said Campus Compact President Andrew Seligsohn. “The experience of the last year has driven home to all of us that we need open-minded, innovative, public-spirited thinkers and doers. That is what Campus Compact is about, and the stories of our Newman Civic Fellows demonstrate it’s who they are.” 

Learn more at the Newman Civic Fellowship website. You can read more about each of the student leaders selected for this year’s cohort at compact.org/newman-civic-fellowship/2021-2022-newman-civic-fellows. 

Campus Compact is a national coalition of colleges and universities committed to the public purposes of higher education. Campus Compact supports institutions in fulfilling their public purposes by deepening their ability to improve community life and to educate students for civic and social responsibility. As the largest national higher education association dedicated solely to campus-based civic engagement, we provide professional development to administrators and faculty to enable them to engage effectively, facilitate national partnerships connecting campuses with key issues in their local communities, build pilot programs to test and refine promising models in engaged teaching and scholarship, celebrate and cultivate student civic leadership, and convene higher education institutions and partners beyond higher education to share knowledge and develop collective capacity. Visit www.compact.org.