Union students awarded funding for community service internships

Publication Date

Class of 1973 Community Service Internship Funding Recipients:

An endowed internship supported by the Class of 1973 in honor of their 35th Class Reunion

Tuan Nguyen, Political Science ’16, The Center for Community Justice, Schenectady, NY

This summer, Tuan will be working with clients in the Alternatives to Incarceration and Reentry programs at The Center for Community Justice. In Alternatives to Incarceration, he will be trained to do intakes, make appointments and refer clients to the appropriate agencies in order to give offenders the option of repaying the community through service. In the Reentry Program, he will assist with clients who are returning from prison back into Schenectady County by making sure they can access social services and meet basic needs to sustain their lives and eliminate stigma and discrimination. Tuan developed an interest in this population after participating in a life skills training for inmates at Lao Cai District Jail in Vietnam. Tuan says, “Through discussion he learned that most prisoners feel insecure and worry about life after prison. I believe clients will stay away from crimes if they receive enough support from the community. This particular group of people plays an important role in public safety; therefore, I want to help them rejoin society and build a sustainable life.” Tuan continues, “This will strengthen my knowledge about the American political system. As an international student from Vietnam, I have always wanted to learn how democratic systems work and I aim to develop one in Vietnam after graduation. Working with the Center of Community Justice perfectly supports my plan of becoming a Congressman of the Vietnam National Assembly and working with people to resolve their struggles and find better ways to build a healthy community.”

Warren Thompson, Music & Biochemistry ’15, Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, Boston, MA

This summer, Warren will be contributing his time to the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program (BHCHP). Warren will work with a Street Team of medical professionals to provide health care to the homeless in a variety of settings including night time rounds on an outreach van, day rounds walking the city's streets, in a medical respite unit, a street clinic at Massachusetts General Hospital, and on house calls and home visits to long term homeless people who have been placed in low threshold housing first programs. In addition, he hopes to connect Shelter Music Boston, a group of professional musicians who perform in homeless shelters, with BHCHP to provide therapeutic music for the homeless in clinics and medical respite sites. Warren states, “I want to volunteer with BHCHP this summer for two reasons: I want to learn how to become a physician who makes a difference in patients' lives and I want to help veterans and other homeless who need medical attention. While you can't force the homeless to go to a shelter or to a place where they can get food, people like the physicians at BHCHP can reach out and give rounds on the streets in order to provide some food and as much medical help as possible. Through this experience, I know I will also learn how to better help my patients in the future.”

Roger H. Hull Summer Community Service Internship Funding Recipient:

An endowed internship supported by the Board of Trustees

James Hicks, Film Studies and Political Science ’15, Media Alliance at the Sanctuary for Independent Media, Troy, NY

This summer, James will be working with the Media Alliance at the Sanctuary for Independent Media in one of the most historically neglected communities in upstate New York. James will support this at-risk community through the "Uptown Summer" program, a series of arts and sustainability activities for young people in North Troy. Specifically, he will teach media production techniques and assist with digital storytelling production. James says combining my “passions for both media creation and community service and development will be advantageous to the efforts of this program.” He continues, “Additionally, the experience gained working in a nonprofit community media and arts center setting and learning how media, art, and activism intersect to connect and build a community will be unparalleled, especially with the goal of joining the Peace Corps.”

Dean of Students Community Service Internship Funding Recipient:

Internship funding supported by the Dean of Students

Danielle MacGregor, Women & Gender Studies and Psychology ’15, Stamford Hospital’s Women’s Health Department, Stamford, CT

Danielle will collaborate with the Women’s Health Department, Sexual Assault Crisis Center, the Stamford Police Department Special Victims Unit, and the District Attorney’s office to ensure the proper handling of sexual assault cases at Stamford Hospital. Danielle will help identify partners in the community to collaborate with and present programs to aid underprivileged women in the prevention and awareness of sexual assault. Danielle states, “I hope to gain a better understanding of how these local institutions work together to care for victims and educate them on primary and secondary preventive measures; and directly aid women who may be unaware of their options after becoming a victim of sexual assault. Women's health is my passion, which is why I have chosen to pursue a graduate degree in public health. Ideally, my primary focus will be on social justice as it relates to women's health issues.”

Becker Career Center Community Service Internship Funding Recipient:

Internship funding supported by the Becker Career Center

Celia Salisbury, Organizing Theme Major: Influence and Persuasion ’15, Peaceful Acres Horses (PAH), Pattersonville, NY

As an intern for Peaceful Acres Horses (PAH), Celia will be marketing for summer programs, assisting in these programs, and helping to raise funds for the horses and organization overall. PAH not only serves as a rescue group for neglected horses, but also provides therapy programs for children and adults who have gone through traumatic life experiences. The relationships formed at PAH are symbiotic; both the horses and the people help each other overcome their traumatic life experiences in a way that no other therapy can. Partnered together in equine assisted experiential learning and psychotherapy programs, the horses and people both learn skills and find a supportive environment. PAH’s main summer events include Youth Summer Camps, Veterans Women’s Retreat, and Kick Cancer’s A** Music Festival. Celia states, “As an avid animal lover, I truly believe that animals can have a therapeutic and emotional impact on humans who are in need of a caring companion. It has always been a dream of mine to start my own non-profit animal rights organization or to join a non-profit organization in the campaigning or marketing department. This internship with PAH offers hands on experience working directly with a non-profit organization.”