Applying leadership skills to real-world situations is what we are all about and our NSLS members made headlines by doing just that, closing out 2021 with a bang. Read on to see this month's inspiring stories of leadership and accomplishment.
Our mission at the NSLS is to Build Leaders Who Make a Better World. Nationwide, our members participate in social events, volunteer for charities, and take part in a wide range of community service initiatives. Upon graduation and entering the workforce, they apply the interpersonal skills they've acquired to start businesses, pursue promotions, and continue applying what they’ve learned as NSLS members.
Student Receives President's Award for Excellence in Leadership
Hannah Griswold of the Westfield State University chapter has earned the President's Award for Excellence in Leadership for demonstrating leadership and service to the university and the surrounding community.
Students receive this award for maintaining a high GPA, and exhibiting a range of both university and community service activities. They must submit an application detailing their leadership experience, volunteer work, and an essay highlighting their achievements.
Griswold, a nursing major, is also an anatomy and physiology tutor, a nursing club member and peer mentor, a former Westfield State women's rugby club player, and a member of the American Holistic Nursing Association. Her volunteer experience includes Operation Stand Down, the Flu Shot Clinic, the University's Relay for Life, Warming Hearts Blanket Drive, Baystate Medical Center's winter wonderland, and several research studies for nursing and health communication.
NSLS Member Earns Continuing Education Award
Michelle LaMorte of the Tompkins Cortland Community College chapter has been honored with the Continuing Education Association of New York’s (CEANY) Regional Outstanding Adult Continuing Education Student Award for the 2020-21 academic year.
The graphic design graduate was chosen as the West Region winner. The $1,000 award recognizes adult students who achieved excellence by demonstrating persistence, drive, and success while overcoming obstacles. LaMorte achieved her educational goals while working full-time to support her family, earning Dean's List and filling several roles on campus, including Design Team Production Manager for the college's literary visual arts journal.
She is also a Pathways Scholar and the recipient of several other scholarships and awards. She graduated with honors in May 2021 and plans on continuing her education with the hopes of becoming a teacher in the arts.
Cybersecurity Student with Big Heart Wins Dean's Award
Luca McLeod of the Barry University chapter has been recognized for his achievements in the classroom, as well as his leadership and service within the Barry community and beyond. His 3.97 GPA and consistent Dean's List and President's List achievements were only one reason why he earned the selective Dean's Award for the Mathematics and Sciences department.
Outside of the classroom, Luca spent several days in Panama City, Florida to help with hurricane relief and in Tallahassee to lobby for "Dignity for Incarcerated Women." In 2020, he traveled to the Bahamas with Barry's School of Education as part of a program focused on education and hurricane relief. He’s also served food at the Miami Rescue Network and participated in the Florida Keys Hurricane Relief effort.
His specialization in cybersecurity landed him cybersecurity internships with both the NFL as an information security audit intern, and the Lennar Corporation as an information security intern.
Doctorate Student Recognized by University President
University of Central Arkansas President Houston Davis recognized Kira Alexander at the December 2021 Board of Trustees meeting for her academic excellence and leadership. The President announced Kira as the Bear CLAWS award recipient (Celebrating the Lofty Achievements of Our Wonderful Students), given to exceptional students who succeed in the classroom and the larger university community.
Kira is the co-founder and former president of the First-Generation Scholars Society, the first recognized student organization at UCA for these types of students. Today, with nearly 200 members, the organization continues to support first-generation students through programming and other events.
Since 2018, she’s worked in the Office of Student Success as a graduate assistant and peer coach, and earlier this year, she was awarded the prestigious Hammill Institute Doctoral Fellowship of $10,000 as she continues her education to pursue a doctorate in school psychology.
NSLS Member Named Valedictorian
Raina Dano has been named Valedictorian of the College of Sciences and Health Professions at Cleveland State University. The summa cum laude graduate studied chemistry with minors in biology and mathematics, and always brought a level of passion to her work.
Her love of research brought her to the Cleveland Clinic's Lerner Research Institute, where she landed a research student internship working on several projects, including those involving inflammation and immunity, brain cancer, and breast cancer. Raina's research eventually led her to co-author several publications. She was awarded a Presidential Award Scholarship to attend CSU, an Ohio Space Grant Consortium Scholar Award, and the Lily Ng Undergraduate Research Award.
This success and recognition comes to a first-generation American whose parents instilled a sense of hard work and dedication. She was born in Albania and immigrated to the United States at three-years-old. Her parents worked labor-intensive jobs to provide their children the opportunity for a better life. Next, Raina will complete a Medical Laboratory Scientist (MLS) certification and continue her education in chemistry.
Other NSLS Members Receiving Recognition IN DECEMBER:
Morgan Mayers (behavioral sciences and education) and Kathryn Rose Compton (public affairs) are representing their schools at Penn State Harrisburg as student marshalls for the spring 2021 commencement because of their academic achievements, involvement on campus, and leadership activities. Full Story >>
Dennis Pendley of the Texas A&M University-San Antonio chapter runs the university General's Store, helping to donate everyday items and food to students in need. The business major and Navy veteran balances life as a student, store manager, and member of a number of organizations. Full Story >>
Mikayla Arnold of the Rose State College chapter has been named Marketing Account Executive by Little League International®, bringing her experience to assist in the day-to-day management and operation of Little League's marketing functions. Full Story >>
Grayson Allen of Washington State University received a scholarship from the Murrow College Scholarship Excellence Fund, allowing him to focus on his studies and get more involved with the NSLS, which he credits as opening up new possibilities for his future. Full Story >>
Chapter Co-Presidents Jenna Warnock and Heather Spexarth of the Fayetteville Technical Community College chapter ran a successful community service event to provide meals to veterans with the help of the NSLS Better World Project. Full Story >>
Alicia Flowers, College of Business and Technology, and Carissa Moore, College of Education and Human Services, have received Western Illinois University's highest recognition by being named College Scholars. Full Story >>
Michaela Shaw, a Dean's List student at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, has been named a recipient of the Mollie E. Bolling Memorial Scholarship, awarded annually to a top performing IUP student majoring in sociology. Full Story >>