The Program

Civic Scholars with President Vivian Bull

Civic Scholars Program

Full Impact Learning for Students Who Serve Drew University actively supports students who show extraordinary commitment to community service by offering Civic Engagement Scholarships of $5,000 per year. Become a Drew Civic Scholar and you will not only receive a monetary award, but you will also join an exciting four-year Civic Engagement Program that will increase your service and leadership skills, while giving you significant real-world experience. Drew Civic Scholars complete 100 hours or more of service annually and participate in special classes, workshops, and off-campus service projects. Drew’s Civic Scholars represent a wide range of academic majors and career interests. Read all about the program details in the Civic Scholars Handbook 2014-2015

Becoming a Drew Civic Scholar

For more information on the Drew Civic Engagement Scholarship: Please email to be added to our email list to be informed of future opportunities

Civic Scholar Program Year-by-Year

First Year: First years enroll in the “Community Service” College Seminar and participate in weekly Civic Engagement workshops focused on practical skill-building. Join a living-learning community in a residence hall with fellow civic scholars.
Sophomore Year:  Sophomores enroll in a 2-credit Civic internship with a non-profit or government agency and participate in skills and leadership development workshops
Junior Year:  Juniors select leadership teams working on special events, alternative break trips, service projects, and other ways of increasing Drew’s impact in communities
Senior Year: Seniors complete and present a culminating civic project, and graduate with Civic Honors.
Every Year: Complete a minimum of 100 hours of service annually benefiting communities beyond Drew’s campus, and enroll in Community-Based Learning (CBL) courses and internships to connect to their academic interests and majors.

For more Information: If you have any questions, contact Amy Sugerman, Assistant Director, Center for Civic Engagement: or (973) 408-3069

First Year Projects

Special Needs Interactive and Awareness

 This event focused on helping the special needs community in schools local to Madison. ARC of Morris County and Drew sports teams participated with Civic Scholars in this event.

Walk 4 Animal Awarness

This group partnered with St. Hubert’s to host a dog-walk/pet adoption day to raise money for St. Hubert’s and awareness of animal issues such as abuse and homelessness. VRC and SAAC participated in this event.

LGBTQ Awarness

This group educated participants on the benefits and necessity of equal treatment, rights and respect for members of the LGBTQ community. Garden State Equality and one from Ally Space Training participated in this event.

Sophomore Internships

C’17 Samantha Lacey

As part of their Year Two requirement, Civic Scholars
are to complete a 2-credit Civic Internship with a non-profit
or government agency. Civic Scholar C’17 Samantha Lacey
ran a drama therapy program for Third Street Alliance‘s
“Sharing the Caring” program in Easton PA, a day-care program for the elderly with neurodegenerative dementia for her summer internship.

Group (3)
C’17 Alexandra Van Grouw

Alexandra Van Grouw interned with the Habitat for Humanity affiliate, Habitat Bergen. She helped with their project “Repair. Rebuild. ReStore.” which is aiding homeowners in Little Ferry, NJ to restore their homes after Hurricane Sandy.

emily at homeless solutions
C’17 Emily Kubin



Emily Kubin  attended the Halloween party at Homeless Solutions, Inc., Emily is interning at this nonprofit that helps the homeless and working poor in Morris County. According to Emily “this internship has been a life changing experience and I will be so sad when it ends in December.”


C’17 Cara Anan


Civic Scholar C’17 Cara Anan interned at the Borough of Madison. According to Cara interning with the borough has truly been a life changing experience, “I have always had a passion for volunteering, but nothing like what I have experienced at this internship. I have networked with local businessmen and women, expanded my knowledge about how local government works, and fulfilled a requirement for the Civic Scholar Program at Drew all while exploring my passion for Political Science.” In this photograph, Cara is being recognized for her volunteer efforts with the local Farm’s Market.

Senior Projects

Drew U Prepare?


Drew Senior Civic Scholar, Sabina Camponogara, planned an event called “Drew U Prepare?” to educate and prepare students for dealing with sexual assault situations. Sabina’s goal was to provide training to Drew students that would help them get out of a situation where sexual assault was possible. The workshop was designed by Prepare Inc., according to Sabina the students took aware “how to assess a situation properly, acknowledge the reality of a situation, and learn their options on how to react in any given situation.”

Megan DaySyrian Refugee Benefit Dinner

Drew Senior Civic Scholar, Megan Day hosted a benefit dinner to bring attention to the humanitarian and political crisis currently happening in Syria. She partnered with the Middle Eastern Student Association. The event served Middle Eastern cuisine and raised money for the Islamic Relief Fund to help Syrian Refugees. Hand crafted tote bags were sold for this cause and henna was done on the hands of the attendees.

Set Her Free

photo 1 (5)Drew Senior Civic Scholar, Kristina Farmer, had an open mic night to support “Set Her Free” (SHF Uganda). Set Her Free is a non-profit organization that works to restore the lives of young girls formerly enslaved by the sex trades. Their mission is to provide these young girls with a safe environment, rehabilitation and to move them in the direction of becoming self-sustainable. The young girls participate in making jewelry to be sold in order to raise money for themselves to make a better life.

Life in a Jar Play

Life in a Jar Play “Life in a Jar” is a play based on the life of Irena Sendler, who rescued 2,500 Jewish children during World War II. Drew Civic Scholar, Nicole Kuruszko, brought Norman Conard and the Kansas students who brought Irena’s story world-wide recognition to perform their play at Drew University. Without the “Life in a Jar” play, this special piece of history would be lost forever. With 200 people in attendance, the performance honored Irena Sendler’s heroism and offered an opportunity for teachers to incorporate related classroom materials into their schools. The Senior Civic Project brought awareness to the difference that one person can make in his or her community and ultimately end up changing the world in the process.

Just “TAP IT” Campaign

Just Tap itThe “Just TAP IT” Campaign raised awareness of the negative effects of the bottled water industry on our health, economy, and environment. Drew Civic Scholar, Kara Pennino, started the campaign in an effort to encourage the campus to use reusable water bottles. The program  included a special film screening of the documentary “Tapped”, which highlighted the many environmental issues related to the bottled water industry such as ocean pollution. This Senior Civic Project also featured blind-water tasting, “I’d Tap It” heart stickers, and “Got Tap?” photo campaign. Reusable water bottles were handed out to students, staff, and faculty members who participated in the events.

Bolden Collaboration

Picture1Drew Civic Scholar, Charlotte Drover, taught the Bolden Collaboration course at Drew University. Her students mentored and collaborated with public high school students from Newark’s Marion Bolden Center, an after-school activities center which also offers programs in film, dance, and singing. Using applied theatre techniques such as devised play-making  bilingual poetry, and story telling through movement, the Bolden students exercised various means of creative expression in performing the issues of their lives. These techniques enhanced their ability to perform, speak publicly, and commit to a communal project. Charlotte’s conclusive report will serve as supplemental material to help with funding and evaluate how the presence of an arts’ program is vital to both Drew and the Bolden Center.

Martial Arts Training

KM_0312_CivicScholar_272Drew Civic Scholar, Chris Deraney, introduced martial arts training and philosophy to children who live and go to school in Newark, New Jersey. Chris completed his Senior Civic Project through his involvement in United Way and the Boys and Girls Club of Newark. The purpose of the project was to help children improve their behavior.  To access his project’s impact, Chris has traced patterns of behavioral changes in the children. For Chris, martial arts is a way of teaching  young people about  discipline and a strong work ethic. The martial arts program not only serves a healthy outlet for students, who may be going through a difficult time in their lives, but also teaches children what to do to avoid conflict.

Air Quality Testing

greatoutdoors Drew Civic Scholar, Brianne Flynn, has combined her passions for environmental science and civic engagement through her Senior Civic Project. Bri’s project involves measuring the air quality in Newark at locations identified by the Ironbound Community Center. In testing the air quality, Bri will help the Ironbound Community by collecting data for their campaign for cleaner air and stricter diesel vehicle regulations. With countless hours spent working in the laboratory, Bri has also based her Honor’s Thesis on her air quality research. Not only will Bri’s project help the Ironbound Community, but it will also serve as a way of thinking about the health consequences of poor air quality.

Success Stories

gibsongridKhemani Gibson C’14

Major: Pan-African studies, History and Spainsh
Where are you headed? NYU for a PhD in the history of the African Diaspora
Why there? Their emphasis on the African diaspora
How did the Civic Scholar Program help get you to where you are now? The Civic Scholar Program allowed me to perfect the ways in which I want to help improve the conditions of the black community in Urban areas.

Carly McCrank C’14

Major: Neuroscience
Where are you headed? NYU’s accelerated BSN program
Why there? NYU college of nursing is a cutting edge university known for its hands on approaches in technology and equipment. It also allows you to apply to the duel degree program while still obtaining your BSN to become an advanced practice nurse.
How did the Civic Scholar Program help get you to where you are now? The Civic Scholar Program helped me greatly in deciding to become a nurse, for in my volunteer opportunities allowed for me to shadow and work with nurses in clinical atmospheres. The program allowed me to confirm through experience at these location sites that I wanted to become a nurse.

Photo, Nicole KuruszkoNicole Kuruszko C’13

Major: Political Science and German
Where are you headed? Master’s degree candidate in International Affairs with a concentration in Cities and Social Justice at The New School in New York City.  In my spare time, I work at the Transregional Center for Democratic Studies, where I assist with the planning of their Democracy and Diversity Institutes that are held annually in South Africa and Poland.  For my future career path, I hope to join the Foreign Service to work for the U.S. Department of State.
Why there? With my language skills in Polish and German, I can be a valuable asset to the Foreign Service and in public diplomacy.  After studying abroad during my time at Drew, I want to continue traveling the world, while working in policy and government.
How did the Civic Scholar Program help get you to where you are now?Being a Civic Scholar has inspired me to go beyond the classroom and become a leader in my community.  It has shown me importance of being involved, teaching me the interpersonal and professional skills needed to succeed in graduate school and in a career

Kristina Farmer C ’1414097b6

Major: Business Studies and English
Where are you headed? Teach For America Arkansas, teaching 5th grade English and Reading
Why there? I became passionate about education reform after volunteering at my first community partnership with Neighborhood House in Morristown.
How did the Civic Scholar Program help to get you where you are now? The Civic Scholar Program has given me project based experience in non-profit work that I am able to apply to my current teaching profession.