Taryn B. Jones, a junior biochemistry major from Willingboro, N.J., will be the University of Maryland Eastern Shore's Newman Civic Fellow for the 2018-19 academic year.
Jones is among 268 college students selected for the honor by Campus Compact, a Boston-based non-profit organization “working to advance the public purposes of higher education.”
A transfer student from Hampton University, Jones wasted no time immersing herself in UMES campus life. She is a member of the Richard A. Henson Honors Program and its student-group president.
She has traveled during winter break to the Dominican Republic, where she did community service work in sometimes challenging conditions alongside peers as an advocate for environmental citizenship.
A year ago, she spent spring break week with a small group of fellow student-volunteers doing such activities as a trash sweep of the beach at Assateague State Park, restoration of a neglected Somerset County cemetery and visiting historic sites as education tourists.
The Newman Civic Fellowship, named for Campus Compact co-founder Frank Newman, is a one-year experience emphasizing personal, professional, and civic growth. Jones will participate in a variety of learning and networking opportunities, including a national conference of all Newman Civic Fellows in partnership with the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate.
The fellowship also provides participants with access to apply for exclusive scholarship and post-graduate opportunities.
Jones says she became interested in community service as a child “working at soup kitchens and participating in occasional park clean ups.”
“It wasn't until I started attending the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, that I became more passionate about giving back to the community,” she said.
Making care packages for the homeless, building ramps for the wheelchair bound, donating food to needy families during the holidays “was nothing short of amazing,” activities she said “touched my heart in a way that has allowed me to appreciate community service differently.”
Campus Compact president Andrew Seligsohn said, “the stories of this year's Newman Civic Fellows make clear that they are bringing people together in their communities to solve pressing problems. That is what Campus Compact is about, and it's what our country and our world desperately need.”
Jones was nominated by a fellow biochemist - UMES President Juliette B. Bell, who was impressed by her altruism and noted that she also has “encouraged her peers to participate … and readily works alongside students who are new to environmental designed projects.”
The Newman Civic Fellowship is supported by the KPMG Foundation and Newman's Own Foundation.
Some material for this announcement came from Campus Compact