Veteran, Student Leader Alan Poindexter Jr. Receives Newman Civic Fellow Award

Alan Poindexter leads the African-American Student League’s annual Pan-African Festival in February 2012. Photo by Matt Carlin

U.S. Marine Corps veteran and Montgomery County Community College student Alan M. Poindexter Jr., of Philadelphia, is among an elite group of students in the country to earn the 2012 Newman Civic Fellow Award from Campus Compact.

Newman Fellows are student leaders, who, through service research and advocacy, seek to find the root causes of social issues to create effective solutions. By sharing ideas and tools through social networking, Poindexter and his peers will leverage an even greater capacity for service and change and will continue to serve as examples for their classmates and communities.

As a former Marine, Poindexter possesses a natural instinct for leadership. Before sustaining a brain injury in 2009 during a tour of duty in Afghanistan, he envisioned a lifelong career in the military. While readjusting to civilian life has been a challenge, Poindexter is redirecting his focus to educating others about veterans’ issues, such as homelessness.

In November 2011, Poindexter organized a lunch for homeless veterans in Philadelphia, called “Salute to the Troops.” He worked with students from area elementary and high schools to collect donations for the lunch, which he, fellow College students and a group of North Penn High School students then prepared and served while engaging in conversation with their guests.

Enrolled as a full-time student in the College’s Emergency Management Planning program, 23-year-old Poindexter balances his studies with a full-time job and volunteer work. He serves as president of the African-American Student League, through which he regularly engages in on- and off-campus service work.

After graduating from the College, Poindexter looks to transfer to a four-year institution and to secure a job as a fire fighter, U.S. Marshall or FEMA agent.

Poindexter is the second Montgomery County Community College student to earn the Newman Civic Fellow Award from Campus Compact. In 2011, Grace Pusey, of Pennsburg, received the award for her service work in India and Mississippi.

Campus Compact is a national coalition of almost 1,200 college and university presidents —representing more than six million students — who are committed to fulfilling the civic purposes of higher education, that is, to improve community life and to educate students for civic and social responsibility. For more information about the organization and the award, visit www.compact.org.

~ by Alana J. Mauger

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