Elon University has been named one of the nation’s top universities for community service, earning a Presidential Award in the first President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. The University, chosen out of 514 that applied for this honor, was recognized for their exemplary overall service learning and outreach program.
Elon University, along with California State University, Monterey Bay, and Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis, received Presidential Awards for community service. They were recognized for a high level of innovation and effectiveness in their service programs. Three other universities, Louisiana State, Tulane and Jackson State, received Presidential Awards for hurricane relief.
The six universities named to the President's Honor Roll were invited to accept the award in Chicago on October 17. The award included a $5,000 prize from the Case Foundation to support community service activities and a special certificate signed by President George W. Bush. Roslyn Carter and Mary Robinson (former President of Ireland and former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights) both spoke on the evening before the event.
Each university was asked to bring a student representative. As a result of her dedication and outreach since her freshman year, Katie Franck, an Aramco brat, was selected as the student to represent Elon and accept the award with President Lambert. Additionally, one student was selected to speak on behalf of all the universities. After phone interviews with representatives from each of the six universities, Katie was chosen. She delivered a speech to 800 delegates about her generation and service.
"I do think college kids are given a bad rap," Katie said. "When they're given the opportunities and it's facilitated the right way, they're willing to donate a lot of time and energy to others."
Katie Franck, daughter of Tricia and Charlie Franck, was born in Dhahran in January 1985 and moved nine months later. She was raised overseas in Bangkok, Thailand, Nairobi, Kenya and Egypt. After 18 years, her parents found their way back to Dhahran and Katie has enjoyed spending the last three summers there. She is currently a senior at Elon University where she is majoring in Sociology and Human Services.