Allen College Student Ashley Figanbaum of Tripoli Receives Newman Civic Fellow Award

May 27, 2011


WATERLOO, Iowa — Allen College student Ashley Figanbaum is one of 135 students from 30 states honored as a Newman Civic Fellow by Campus Compact. The Newman Civic Fellows Awards recognize inspiring college student leaders who have demonstrated an investment in finding solutions for challenges facing communities throughout the country.

Figanbaum, who recently completed her junior year as a nursing student at Allen College, in Waterloo, Iowa, has been instrumental in establishing a program for fifth and sixth grade girls in Tripoli, Iowa, her hometown. The program’s focus is helping young girls build self-esteem by empowering them to take care of themselves through healthy behaviors and to role model contributions to society through community service and community leadership activities. The ability to autonomously create, organize and implement this program demonstrates Figanbaum’s character and her strengths, including her abilities to lead, collaborate and serve the community.

From 30 states, college and university presidents have nominated the best-of-the-best: promising college student leaders who have demonstrated an investment in finding solutions for challenges facing communities throughout the country. Through service, research, and advocacy, these Newman Civic Fellows are making the most of their college experiences to better understand themselves, the root causes of social issues and effective mechanisms for creating lasting change.

“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,” explains Campus Compact President Maureen F. Curley.

Through service-learning courses and other opportunities for community engagement, colleges are developing students’ critical public problem-solving skills such as the ability to research and analyze community needs, a willingness to lead and participate in public processes and debate, the commitment to raise awareness about community challenges and the ability to inspire people to become part of solutions.

Dr. Frank Newman—one of the founders of Campus Compact—had a tremendous impact on American education and its role in the development of citizens who are eager and prepared to make a difference. He dedicated his life to creating systemic change through education reform and he would have been inspired by this first group of 135 Newman Civic Fellows, named by Campus Compact. They are, quite simply, reflections and affirmations of his life’s work.

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 higher education to improve community life and to educate students for civic and social responsibility. Through the Newman Civic Fellows Awards, college and university presidents acknowledge students with the ability and motivation to create lasting change in our communities. For more information about the Newman Civic Fellows, visit

Offering nursing education since 1925, Allen College became a degree-granting institution in 1989. Allen College offers Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN); Master of Science in Nursing (MSN); Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP); Associate of Science in Radiography (ASR); and Bachelor of Health Sciences (BHS) programs. For more information on Allen College, call 319-226-2000 or visit


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