Student Recognized for Commitment to Service

Thursday, June 2, 2011

PHILADELPHIA (June 2, 2011) – Rising Saint Joseph’s University senior Gretchen Timer of Downingtown, Pa., received the Newman Civic Fellow Award from Campus Compact, a national organization dedicated to campus-based civic engagement. Timer, a 2008 graduate of Bishop Shanahan High School in Downingtown, was nominated for the award by SJU’s former president, Timothy R. Lannon, S.J.

Campus Compact is a national coalition of more than 1,100 college and university presidents – representing some 6 million students – who are committed to fulfilling the civic purposes of education. Nationwide, the Newman Civic Fellows Award recognizes student leaders who are committed to finding solutions for challenges faced by communities. Timer is one of 135 students from 30 states to be honored.

“These students represent the next generation of public problem solvers and civic leaders. They serve as national examples of the role that higher education can – and does – play in building a better world,” says Campus Compact President Maureen F. Curley.

“I am greatly honored and excited to have received the Newman Civic Fellow Award, which is providing me with several networking opportunities to meet and connect with other students working towards common social justice goals,” says Timer.

A sociology major, Timer is engaged in service and justice work on local, national and global levels. She has been a service site coordinator with SJU’s weekly service program for the past two

years, acting as a liaison between student volunteers and the Philadelphia community organizations that partner with the University. Her efforts facilitate ongoing social justice reflection opportunities for her fellow students. Timer has served communities in Philadelphia, the Appalachian region and Duran, Ecuador.

“Among the many Saint Joseph’s students who are dedicated to social justice, Gretchen stands out as a leader in a variety of contexts,” says Campus Minister of Service and Social Justice Programs Beth Ford. “She has developed several new service partnerships, and in each situation, she was an effective ambassador, forging strong relationships with our community partners.”

As a sociology major, Timer has a heightened awareness of the underlying social issues that create challenges in communities, Ford says. “I’m impressed that Gretchen integrates what she learns in the classroom in her service work,” Ford adds.

Media Contact

Patricia Allen, Senior Associate Director of University Communications, 610-660-3240,

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