Honors & Awards
Kelli Maxwell, dean of student development at Community College of Allegheny County South Campus (Pa.), was named a 2017 American Association for Women in Community Colleges’ “40 Under 40” awardee. The award recognizes outstanding female leaders under the age of 40 who are making a difference in community colleges. Maxwell received the honor at the AAWCC Annual Awards Breakfast in New Orleans. She was competitively selected and was nominated by CCAC South Campus President Charlene Newkirk. Among Maxwell’s accomplishments is the acquisition of a Jefferson Regional Foundation grant that enabled the campus to launch, in cooperation with the Pittsburgh Community Food Bank, the Campus Cupboard Food Pantry to address the growing concern of food insecurity among local college students. Under Maxwell’s direction, the successful CCAC South Campus food pantry has become a model for college food pantries across the nation. Maxwell also spearheaded CCAC South’s first spring break service learning trip to Flint, Michigan, to help support the community during the Flint water crisis. In addition, she serves as a member of the Jefferson Community Collaborative, which creates opportunities for community organizations and service providers who are dedicated to improving communities in the region. According to AAWCC President Beverly Walker- Griffea, the 40 Under 40 Award pays tribute to the talent of up and coming leaders in community colleges.
Stephen Fanus is Bristol Community College’s (Mass.) 29 Who Shine recipient for 2017. Each year, the Department of Higher Education honors a representative from each of the 29 public colleges and universities to demonstrate the talent and future contributions of those graduating from the public system. Fanus, originally from Saint Lucia in the Caribbean, began his education in Bristol Community College’s Adult Basic Education Program learning to read and write, before completing both an associate in science in paralegal studies and an associate in arts in communication in December 2016. Fanus graduate this month. While at BCC, Fanus launched a student radio show on the BCC Campus bringing thought-provoking topics and guests to the college community, served as the president and promoter of the college’s debate club, and attended the college’s Advocacy Days at the Massachusetts State House as a champion of public higher education. He continues to be involved in his local community by attending events at regional high schools, as an inspiration and representative for students not sure what to do next after completing a high school equivalency exam. Stephen is currently pursuing a bachelor of arts in political science at Bridgewater State University and plans to attend law school. Working as an intern in legal service has made him passionate about becoming an attorney who can serve those who need it most. “The 29 Who Shine honorees are exceptional student leaders who saw a way to improve something and acted on it, and for that we are grateful. They are a credit to the colleges and universities they attend. We are proud of their contributions to their communities and the Commonwealth,” Education Secretary James Peyser said.
Linda C. Young, president of Wallace Community College- Dothan (Ala.) was one of 19 college presidents/campus CEOs recognized at the 2017 Shirley B. Gordon Awards of Distinction during the recent PTK Catalyst 2017, Phi Theta Kappa’s annual convention in Nashville, Tennessee. Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Honor Society recognizes scholarship among two-year college students, and gives an opportunity for the development of leadership and service. College presidents and campus CEOs are selected for this award based on outstanding efforts toward promoting the goals of Phi Theta Kappa. The award is named for the late Shirley B. Gordon, Phi Theta Kappa's longest-serving Board of Directors chair and president emeritus of Highline Community College in Des Moines, Washington. Gordon was named Phi Theta Kappa's Most Distinguished College President in 1984. WCCD has an active PTK Omega Beta Chapter. Beginning in 2008 as a One Star Level Chapter, it was recognized last year for obtaining the Five Star Level status, the highest level that can be achieved. While PTK members have very similar profiles to other college students, their completion rate at a community college stands at 83 percent. Overall, 71 percent of PTK members ultimately transfer to a four-year university.