2022-2023 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2023)

View or download a PDF slideshow highlights the following projects.

Manu Hope Kannare
Augsburg University

This project will create a program that focuses on the trauma we have experienced internally by discussing our experience in a community setting. This program will work with the YMCA to provide a familiar space for children, teenagers, and young adults that identify as Black or a BIPOC community member.
Phuong Kim Le
Concordia College, Moorhead

This project will develop a system, a website, that lists issues related to the dimension of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion that students might face when they study outside of Concordia (for now, it will mainly be for study abroad) and offers guidelines and/or supports if possible.
Dasiyah Franklin-Carter
Hamline University

The goal of this initiative will be to empower youth to take action in their neighborhood through service activities with the collaboration of a local organization.
Anthony Meng
Hamline University

One of the ways we can address food apartheid is by bringing affordable and healthy food to people while simultaneously ensuring their autonomy and dignity. This project will collaborate with the Food Group, specifically, their Twin Cities Mobile Market (TCMM). The Twin Cities Mobile Market is a market on a bus that conveniently brings affordable, fresh, and high-quality groceries directly into neighborhoods around St. Paul and Minneapolis that don’t have easy access to full-service supermarkets, grocery stores, or food shelves.
Louise Ba
St. Catherine University

This project will serve a community of young girls from 7th-12th grade by working with a Girls Inc. cohort at the YWCA in Minneapolis. The project’s purpose is to reshape the existing curriculum to help advocate for and support girls dealing with sexual violence.
Emilia Garrido Vásquez
St. Catherine University

This project will provide a totally cost-free Introductory bilingual dance class for children, implementing the principles of ballet to serve as a structured class model that is easy for children to follow.
Caitlin Anderson
University of St. Thomas 

In an effort to better serve disadvantaged members of the Twin Cities, this project will create a food-rescue delivery system (App) that would enable members of the community with free time and the desire to give back, to deliver groceries from local food shelves to their clients at their own convenience.
Liliana Valverde Ortiz
University of St. Thomas 

This project will educate, inform, and provide resources to those who are in ESL community in Burnsville.  This would include first generation students, focusing on Spanish speaking students, and students whose parents struggle with English, as well as students who have had to put aside school to help their family.
Alexander Vue
University of St. Thomas 

This project will focus on creating a network between Hmong Americans who are experienced in different career paths and connecting them to high school and college students in a mentorship program.

2020-2022 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2021)

Nou-Chee Chang
Augsburg University 

“Hlub Lub Hlwb: Bringing Mental Health Awareness to the Hmong Community in Brooklyn Center”
Hlub Lub Hlwb (translated as Love The Mind in Hmong) is a program that aims to bring awareness and destigmatize mental health with Hmong youth in the Brooklyn Center community. Hmong high school students will learn more about various mental health topics through a culturally relevant lens. Some topics will include how mental health plays a role in Hmong identity and understanding the practices and services to support themselves, family and peers.

Athena Estime
Augsburg University

“Personal & Professional Development for Success”
A program for Pan-African female high school seniors and recent graduates who need help navigating barriers associated with mental health and social oppression.  Participants will gain the knowledge and poise to succeed in all work and academic spaces of their choosing. The program will identify values and personality traits for personal development and confidence.

Nassima El Kasmi
Concordia College 

“Women in Business Mentorship Program”
The Women In Business Mentorship Program is a program specifically designed for female minority students in high school interested in business. Students will be selected from an AVID class at Moorhead High School and will have the opportunity to have a wider and more positive view of their future as minorities through this mentoring program.

Irwin Flores
Hamline University 

“A Strong Foundation”
The aim of this program is to teach incoming high school freshmen students about the opportunities available to them to help prepare them to attend college and succeed in life. This program will partner with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Minneapolis to do our small part to help raise the graduation rate and percentage of those attending college among students of color.

Andrea Mata Sarabia
St. Catherine University 

“The Poder Project: Family as a Catalyst for Literacy”
The Poder Project will use a family approach to help close the achievement gap in literacy for Latinx students. The project will address the importance of reading, representation in books and support for and from families for the literacy of children.

Jennifer Nieto
University of St. Thomas 

“Unplugged: Learning from Inspiring Voices”
In collaboration with Webber-Camden Library, the project will encourage youth to disconnect from their devices this summer. We will gather weekly to form community. Each week we will watch educational and inspirational TED Talks with guided discussions about content and how to incorporate those insights into their lives.

2019-2021 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2020)

2018-2020 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2019)

2017-2019 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2018)

2016-2018 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2017)

2015-2017 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2016)

2014-2016 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2015)

Sagal Abdirahman Ali Shire
Augsburg College 

Time to Change How We View Health
Focus on health needs in the Riverside neighborhood among first generation Somali women. Her goal is to provide Somali women with workshops that are led by dietitians and other professionals in the area. This will enable them to live a healthy lifestyle.

Muna Mohamed
Augsburg College

The Triangle Program: Coach, Parents and Child Fighting the Misconception of Muslim Women in Sports
Create a triangle program that involves coach, parents and children to break the barriers and misconceptions of Muslim women in sports. Through the program, the parents and children will be educated on the cultural and religious view of the importance of an active lifestyle.

Laurel Anderson
The College of St. Scholastica

The Art of Making a Statement
Make an impact in the lives of children who are suffering from mental illness by using art as a coping mechanism. The project participants will work together to create an art display and presentation for the National Day Without Stigma in October 2015.

Samantha Adank
Concordia College

Growing from the STEM
Engage at-risk women in a two-week, day-long program with mentors in solving problem-based projects about STEM topics. At the end of the program, these young women will take more ownership of their abilities, accomplishments and ideas; be better aware of the female presence in professional STEM activities, and begin to recognize the value of their voice in the STEM community.

Safia Hirsi
St. Catherine University 

The Glow of Knowledge
Provide young Somali girls from grades 5-8 who attend Best Academy East in North Minneapolis the opportunity to explore science with the help and support of fellow Somali mentors. This project will create an atmosphere of cultural understanding and learning.

Skye Curtis
St. Olaf College 

Reach for the Stars
Use a combination of dramatic arts in a multi-session drama therapy summer camp for the special needs youth of Northfield, MN to build self-efficacy, teach practical life skills, spark playful joy and most importantly, show these amazing kids that the stars they are reaching for are found within.

2013-2015 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2014)

Demaris Montoya-Mendoza
Augsburg College 

Creating Support for Youth in Phillips Neighborhood
Keep youth academically active throughout the summer by conducting literacy groups and academic activities.

Victoria Ostenso
Carleton College 

Addressing Personal and Community Health through the Lens of Food in Rice County
A two-part food literacy project that works closely with existing food access issues in Rice County.

Mackenzie Lindquist
Concordia College

A New ERA: English for Refugee Adults
Build confidence in refugee adults with the English language to empower them to work and live independently. Aspects of the program include an in-home tutoring service, classroom learning and a tutoring training program.

May Mao Yang
Concordia University, St. Paul

Kawm Luam Dej, Cawm Txoj Sia (Learn to Swim, Save a Life)
Provide an opportunity to inspire and enhance the knowledge of elementary Hmong students along with their parents to understand the value of safety swimming lessons. Participants will improve their physical fitness, learn to build up confidence, and be prepare to offer future support to those in need.

Nicole Ektnitphong
Gustavus Adolphus College

Leading from Within – Personal Leadership and Your Community
This project will focus on developing personal leadership with upcoming high school students at Worthington High School through three main aspects: vocation, self-awareness, and authenticity.

Mai Yang Xiong
St. Catherine University

iMusic: Reaching for the Stars
This project will provide resources and networking opportunities for low-income St. Paul high school students who aspire to create music with passion. Through the development of their musical talents, participants will explore their self-identity, build leadership skills and contribute to their community.

2012-2014 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2013)

Estefania Zapata-Garcia
Augsburg College 

Learn to Manage your Personal Finance
Teaching about personal finance and finance awareness, will help the community be more organize with their money. This will also help them to make better decisions with their personal finance.

Phoebe Chastain
Carleton College 

Peer-Led Pregnancy Prevention in Northfield, MN
A peer education training program directed towards low-income ninth and tenth-grade students in the Northfield community that focuses on teen pregnancy prevention through a comprehensive reproductive health philosophy.

Kristy Lou Olson
The College of St. Scholastica 

Nutrition for Growth
My project proposal “Nutrient for Growth” involves creating and implementing an education program with a focus on nutrition and a demonstration garden at the Spirit Valley Facility in Duluth, MN. The Goal of this project is to promote self-sufficiency and healthy eating habits to enrich the physical and emotional lives of the young mothers and children living at this facility, as well as the preschool children in the facility’s Early Childhood Education Program. 

Sandy Xiong
Gustavus Adolphus College 

Promoting Hmong Interconnectedness
The Seedlings online magazine project offers Hmong teens a way to further understand of the Hmong culture and develop an appreciation for literacy and human growth. 

Jiccarra Hollman
St. Catherine University

Sharing and Bridging Cultures across Generational Relationships
Ignite the “spark” in elderly residents through participation in activities, sharing life experiences and bridging cultures by creating long lasting relationships across generations.

Mitchell Hinnenkamp
University of St. Thomas 

Youth Empowerment Project
The Youth Empowerment Project will focus on the empowerment and equality of youth by promoting self-confidence and well-being through programming focused on anti-bullying. The highlight will be creating Public Service Announcements.

2011-2013 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2012)

Jazmine Darden
Augsburg College 

Bridgin' the Gap
This program strives to gain interest in the STEM fields to students in grades 3-8. In collaboration with the GISE/GEMS summer program, my project will enhance the students knowledge of structural engineering through bridge building.

Shantrice King
Carleton College 

"The Courage to Write" Magazine Project for Women of Color
The program focuses on building writing skills of Somali and Latino young women who currently reside in Faribault, MN. The participants will use the writing skills they learn to compile a magazine for young people

Ellen Nikodym
Macalester College 

Reading Takes Center Stage
This project will work with students attending West 7th Community Center’s summer program to maintain and improve their literacy skills over the summer. Students in 5th to 8th grade will spend time with theater, poetry and creative writing, providing opportunities to build and practice reading and writing skills.

Jodi Stumpner
St. Catherine University 

Eco Education for Underprivileged Youth
Provide equitable opportunities for underserved youth in eco education with STEM focus. Summer program will partner with Hmong high school students to co-teach.

Serena Xiong
St. Olaf College 

Promoting Radon Awareness among Hmong and Hispanic Families
The summer project entails a community initiative to promote radon awareness in Hmong and Hispanic communities living in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota. These two communities are underserved in public health education, and are at high risk for developing lung cancer, because they reside within Brooklyn Center, an area tested positive for high Radon exposure. 

Amanda McNaughton
University of St. Thomas 

Skills for School
A school preparatory program for children and mothers at East Metro Place.

2010-2012 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2011)

Marisol Campusano
Augsburg College 

Empowering Young Latino Women — Pursuing Education and talking about Family Planning
My project involves Latina students and parents. I will educate them about family planning by giving workshops two times a week. There will also be guest speakers to talk about the importance of education, family structure and family planning.

Marcie Flygare
Bethany Lutheran College 

Healthy Fun at Heart
I will educate the developmentally disabled in the New Ulm community about heart disease. This will be done by teaching, educating and prompting healthier lifestyle choices to reduce their chances of a heart attack.

Jacqueline Carlson
College of St. Benedict 

S.U.C.C.E.S.S. Service for Unity, Civic Awareness, Creativity, Empowerment, Social Justice and Sustaining Leadership
I will partner with the Keystone group to develop their service component and create a leadership component with the hopes to generate passion and civic awareness within the youth’s lives. 

Irma Marquez
Gustavus Adolphus College 

Finding Yourself and Breaking Your Stereotype (FYBYS)
My service project will help 5th and 6th graders develop cultural identity and cultural awareness with the goal of looking at education as the answer and possibility.

Jake Branchaud-Linsk
Hamline University 

Youth Peace Keepers
Design and conduct a series of youth community workshops and then train peer mentors to provide a lasting service for St. Paul Housing residents.

Bryant Ortega
University of St. Thomas 

Project HOPE – Health Offers People Enlightenment
The mission of project HOPE is to create an environment for school aged children and their families to make healthy choices, the easy choice and to increase physical activity.

2009-2011 Scholars

(completed their projects in summer 2010)

Pa Dao Yang
Augsburg College 

Expressionist Art “Youth Leadership Development through the Arts”
The project aims to help Hmong refugee youth combine traditional Hmong art with modern art to express themselves. This project will build relationships that will retain the Hmong youth’s cultural ties to the Hmong community.

Sheng Xiong
College of St. Catherine  

Young Hmong Women and Disabilities: Living, Learning and Leading Together
Create a culturally specific summer program dedicated to improving and empowering the lives of Hmong teen girls living with health conditions or disabilities. The program will consist of leadership building workshops and activities to foster deeper connections with the Hmong community.

Rebecca Lund
The College of St. Scholastica 

Do You Hear What I See?
Day camp for students who are deaf or hard of hearing and their hearing classmates. The project objectives are to build relationships among the participants and teach hearing students about deaf culture, including American Sign Language.

Laura Jensen
Gustavus Adolphus College 

Cultural Experiences and Self-Awareness (CESA)
I would provide a program for Hispanic 4th -6th grade children that would enrich their knowledge of their Latina cultural identity as a part of the American culture and provide them with scaffolding help for developing leadership and goal setting skills.

Adam Zagoria
Hamline University

"Bodies Upon the Gears"
A documentary film and a developing curriculum which seeks to explore, through a sample of Hamline University students, how young adults in America form political identities and what factors affect their political development.

Andrew Wilson
St. Olaf College 

Hip-Hop Anonymous (Hip-Hop Anonimo in Spanish)
In order to erase the skewed negative reputation that the youth of Northfield, MN have received through recent local and statewide media coverage, I will create a new branch of the Northfield Union of Youth: The Key, called “Hip-Hop Anonymous” that will use the four main aspects of true Hip-Hop culture to allow youth of Northfield the chance to demonstrate their colors in an appealing, community-approved way.