Harward Center honors individuals, groups for strengthening town-gown ties

One of three Bates students to receive 2012 Harward Center student awards for community-based academic work, Catherine Elliott ’12 first made a splash at Bates by collecting enough yogurt lids to win a contest benefiting the local Boys & Girls Club.

In a May 8 ceremony, the Bates College office responsible for sustaining relationships between the college and the community honored 15 persons and organizations for their efforts to strengthen college-community ties.

The sixth annual presentation of the Harward Center for Community Partnerships Awards took place at the Edmund S. Muskie Archives at Bates.

Rooted in Bates’ educational mission, the Harward Center is a focal point for connected learning that harmonizes the Bates education with community interests. Award recipients have been especially successful at connecting Bates with the larger community through collaboration, research and service.

Here are the 2012 award recipients:
Three Bates seniors received the Student Award for Outstanding Community-Based Academic Work: Jordan Conwell of Rocky River, Ohio; Catherine Elliott of Edina, Minn.; and Deborah Mack of Tarrytown, N.Y. The Award for Outstanding Community Volunteerism and Student Leadership went to three seniors: Alyse Bigger of Dorchester, Mass.; Allison Kamm of Salt Lake City, Utah; and Lucy O’Keefe of Chicago.

Two Bates faculty members were honored with Harward Center awards. Visiting Assistant Professor of English Mollie Godfrey received the Faculty Award for Outstanding New Community Partnership Initiative, in recognition of her work with Bates students on the documentary archives of the Portland branch of the NAACP.

Associate Professor of Psychology Krista Aronson was given the Faculty Award for Sustained Commitment to Community Partnership.

One honor, the Award for Outstanding Community Project/Partnership, went to all the participants (including community partners) in a Bates course: Educating for Democracy, taught by Visiting Assistant Professor of Education Jen Sandler.

Named for the Phippsburg conservation area administered by the college, the Bates-Morse Mountain Award for Environmental Stewardship went to Don Bruce, gatekeeper at the conservation area. Also recognizing service to the natural environment, Casco Baykeeper Joe Payne received the 2012 Bates-Morse Mountain Award for Environmental Lifetime Achievement.

Community Partner Awards for Outstanding New Initiative were presented to Robin Fleck of the Auburn school department’s Project SHIFA, which makes culturally appropriate mental health services available to local Somali youths and their families; and to Tree Street Youth, an organization founded by a Bates alumna that supports local youth through academics, arts and athletics.

The other community partners honored with Harward Center awards were:
Museum L-A, which received the Community Partner Award for Sustained Commitment to Partnership; and Estelle Rubinstein, former executive director of Androscoggin Head Start and Child Care, who received the James and Sally Carignan Award for Career Achievement.