Celebrating St. Kate's civic engagement at 2023 Campus Compact

On April 13, President Roloff honors students, faculty, and community partner Mano a Mano.

St. Catherine University is part of Iowa and Minnesota Campus Compact (IAMNCC), an organization devoted to strengthening social change and civic engagement through higher education across its network of 56 campuses. 

Minnesota and Iowa Campus Compact member campuses gather annually for an annual awards ceremony that both unites and inspires attendees. This year, President Rebecca Koenig Roloff ’76 will honor three St. Catherine University examples of leadership and community building tomorrow, Thursday, April 13, in Rauenhorst Ballroom. Please join us in congratulating the accomplishments of St. Kate’s students, faculty, and community partner Mano a Mano.


Two St. Kate's students hold provisions for Food Access Hub

The Presidents’ Student Leadership Award is given to an individual student or a student organization that models a deep commitment to civic responsibility and leadership and integration of civic engagement into the college experience.

The Community-Engaged Learning (CEL) pilot student leaders supported this pilot by Community Work and Learning in The Reflective Woman course across all College for Women sections, 20 in total. They coordinated logistics, led class presentations, facilitated CEL implementation, and supported reflection. By helping with this pilot and engaging first-year students, these students modeled leadership roles and community impact that newer students can aspire to:

  • Rin Kilde ’23 — CWL student coordinator
  • Anchee Durben ’24, Mikaela Campbell ’23, Maya Villafuerte ’24, Sophie Gibson ’25, Ava LaPlante ’23, and Victoria Delgado-Palma ’23 — Welcoming the Dear Neighbor? researchers
  • Julia Walquist ’23 — St. Kate's Empty Bowls coordinator
  • Mollie Pierson ’25 and Kaitlin Corey ’24, MPH’25 — Food Access Hub interns.
Ambria Crusan

The Presidents’ Civic Engagement Leadership Award is for a member of the faculty, administration, or staff who has significantly advanced their campus’ distinctive civic mission with partnerships and engagement.

Ambria Crusan, PhD, assistant professor of exercise science, nutrition, and dietetics, has taught at St. Kate's since 2017. She has led numerous undergraduate community-engaged learning courses, pursuing professional development opportunities and forming ongoing relationships with community partners. She has mentored students through courses, clinic work, and research — including in the Assistantship Mentoring Program and Community Leaders programs. Crusan's community-engaged research is extensive. From a focus on local community clinic and food shelf work to interprofessional education collaboration in Tanzania, Crusan is committed to working towards a more just world.

Two St. Kate's students assemble bags for Mano a Mano

The Presidents’ Community Partner Award is for a community-based individual or organization that has enhanced the quality of life in the community in meaningful and measurable ways.

Mano a Mano has been a steadfast community partner of St. Catherine University for over two decades, with a mission "to create partnerships with impoverished Bolivian communities that improve health and increase economic well-being." Countless St. Kate's classes have assisted their efforts, starting with sorting medical supplies and other needed items in the garage of founders Segundo and Joan Velasquez, and now at the St. Paul warehouse. Staff member Carmen Paredes Dockry has mentored many Community Leaders interns, who have grown in their leadership and professional skill while deepening Mano a Mano's ongoing efforts. Community Work and Learning and St. Catherine University are honored to support Mano a Mano's ongoing work and impact.

Debra Eardley ’96, DNP, to receive Presidents’ Civic Engagement Leadership Award from Metro State

Also at the awards ceremony, St. Kate’s alumna Debra Eardley ’96, DNP, will receive the Presidents’ Civic Engagement Leadership Award from Virginia Arthur, JD, president of Metropolitan State University. Dr. Eardley has worked to institutionalize a culture and practice of community engagement at Metro State, where she is associate professor of nursing. In fall of 2022, she opened a community clinic with a focus on conversations toward healing and recovery in the West Phillips community in Minneapolis, developing long-term partnerships with agencies in this neighborhood in support of this community engagement.


Eva Ngono ’25
Eva Ngono ’25 named Newman Civic Fellow

Just announced from the national Campus Compact, Eva Ngono ’25 has been named St. Kate’s 2023–24 Newman Civic Fellow. The fellowship recognizes students who stand out for their commitment to creating positive change in communities locally and around the world.

Ngono, an Antonian Honors student double majoring in art history and political science, works to effect positive change with her social justice advocacy in the St. Kate’s and broader communities. With a focus on education and social justice within our St. Kate’s community, she is part of the Student Leadership Team and Student Action Planning Committee, both of which focus on collaborative action. Ngono is involved on campus in many capacities, including Justice Reads, The Catherine G. Murphy Gallery, the Office of Scholarly Engagement, and Multicultural and International Services and Programs (MIPS).

Through the fellowship, Ngono will receive Campus Compact learning and networking opportunities that emphasize personal, professional, and civic growth.