TCC Student Recognized for Food Pantry Work
NEWMAN CIVIC FELLOW: Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education Chancellor Glenn Johnson, right, and Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education Chair Dr. Ronald H White present Joseph Mason with a certificate recognizing him as a 2018 Newman Civic Fellow. He is one of 12 Oklahoma college students to receive the award.
Joseph Mason uses his voice to be a public problem solver by leading the discussion about food security issues facing his fellow classmates at Tulsa Community College. Mason helped establish a campus food pantry at the Metro Campus and participated in a community Sustainability Conference in an effort to unify both campus and local communities to reduce food insecurity.
Now, Mason is one of 268 college students from across the country to be named a 2018 Campus Compact Newman Civic Fellow. The award recognizes and supports community-committed students who have demonstrated an investment in finding solutions for challenges facing communities throughout the country.
“Not only did Mason help establish the campus food pantry, but he continues to volunteer each week to ensure that access to adequate food isn’t a barrier to student success,” said President & Leigh B. Goodson, Ph.D. in his nomination letter. “He understands that access to a nutritious diet can have a large impact on an individual’s ability to be successful.”
As a Newman Civic Fellow, Mason will take part in a year-long program emphasizing personal, professional, and civic growth. Through the fellowship, Campus Compact provides a variety of learning and networking opportunities, including a national conference of Newman Civic Fellows in partnership with the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate.
“As an environmental science major, Mason actively works to improve communities through the growth and distribution of food. His work extends to the community as a volunteer garden coordinator at the Tipton Community Garden where he instructs local residents on how to grow their own produce,” said Goodson.
Mason plans to graduate December 2018 from and transfer to to complete a bachelor’s degree in natural resource and ecology management with a focus on research in sustainability pertaining to food production and ecological restorative processes. As a Newman Civic Fellow, the fellowship provides Mason with access to apply for exclusive scholarship and post-graduate opportunities.
“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to celebrate and engage with such an extraordinary group of students,” said Campus Compact President Andrew Seligsohn. “The stories of this year’s Newman Civic Fellows make clear that they are bringing people together in their communities to solve pressing problems.”
The fellowship is named in honor of Frank Newman, one of Campus Compact’s founders, and is supported by the Foundation and by the Newman’s Own Foundation.