Maggie Dunne ’13 earns Newman Civic Fellow Award

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Maggie Dunne ’13 is known on Colgate’s campus for her devotion to philanthropy, from involvement with the COVE, to serving as philanthropy chair in her sorority, to operating her own nonprofit organization. Thanks to her staunch commitment to service and leadership, she’s been awarded the Newman Civic Fellow Award from Campus Compact.

Dunne’s recognition stems primarily from her work with her nonprofit organization, the Lakota Pine Ridge Children’s Enrichment Project Limited (LPRCEP). She first visited the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota as a sophomore in high school. What she saw — especially children lacking proper clothing for the extreme weather and poor quality of school supplies — shocked her into action.

She started by organizing a clothing and book drive in her hometown of Scarsdale, N.Y., to an overwhelmingly positive response. She received 2,000 books and more than 300 coats for the children, drawing the attention of a local lawyer, who helped her incorporate the organization. Since then, she has continued to gather much-needed supplies for the reservation children, and will be running a camp for them this summer as well.

On campus, Dunne has organized other book, boot, and clothing drives, and an alternative spring break trip to give other students the opportunity to help, too. Her efforts have attracted the attention and help of other individuals nationwide.

Aside from the LPRCEP, Dunne has a hand in numerous other organizations, at Colgate and abroad. She’s a member of the Disaster Response Team (DiRT), Students for Students, the Thought Into Action Institute, and the Native American Students Association. She’s also spent summers in Bangladesh, learning the language and working with the Grameen Bank, a microfinance organization that gives small loans to the poor.

Dunne’s service made her the perfect candidate for the Newman Civic Fellowship. College presidents submit nominees, and the award is given to “Promising college student leaders who have demonstrated an investment in finding solutions for challenges facing communities throughout the country.”

By helping to alleviate the Lakota Nation’s destitution and raising awareness of their condition, Dunne earned one of the 135 fellowship awards.