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Williams receives statewide service award

Williams_and_Barnhill_t.jpgBOONE—Appalachian State University senior Samuel Williams received the inaugural 2011 John H. Barnhill Civic Trailblazer Award during North Carolina Campus Compact’s Student Conference: Connect the Dots held Nov. 12 at Wake Forest University.

Sam Williams (left) and John H. Barnhill.jpgSam Williams (left) has received the John H. Barnhill Civic Trailblazer Award, named for assistant vice president of University Advancement at Elon University John H. Barnhill, pictured right. (Photo submitted)

Named for John H. Barnhill, the organization’s founding executive director and an innovator in civic engagement, the award is presented to a student at a North Carolina Campus Compact member institution who demonstrates creativity and innovation to start or significantly deepen campus efforts to address community issues and needs.

Williams helped establish ACT OUT, a new community service group for students interested in getting more experience with service event planning and getting more involved with Appalachian and the Community Together (ACT), Appalachian’s clearinghouse for community service, service-learning and community based research opportunities). He also founded Men of Service Day at Appalachian. Williams became a member of the Student Conduct Board, co-chair of the impACT Team, a team consisting of student leaders committed to improving community service opportunities for other students, was a two-time Alternative Spring Break peer leader and youth group director at a local church.  His nominator Kate Johnson wrote, “One cannot walk through campus without meeting people who have been recruited to serve either on campus or in the community by Sam.”

Due in part to Williams’ service, more than $20,000 has been raised and more than 1,000 volunteers have been recruited for events he helped plan, which include the MLK Challenge, BIG Sale, ACT OUT!, Alternative Spring Break, Men of Service and Hall Council.  Nearly $100,000 has been raised and more than 2,500 volunteers have participated in events he has been involved with, including Dance Marathon, Earth Day, and Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week.

North Carolina Campus Compact builds collaborations among public, independent and community colleges and universities. Presidents and chancellors commit their institutions to being “engaged campuses” that enhance a student’s sense of responsibility, citizenship, leadership and awareness of community, and impact the community by partnering with local organizations to address real needs. For additional information, visit