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Current Scholars

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Lizzie Carsello - Class of 2019

Inspired by her faith, Lizzie began her service by utilizing her passions, especially art.  In the summer before her freshman year of high school, Lizzie, her brother, and two cousins started a service project, Share the Gift, that brings music and art to the elderly, disadvantaged, and disabled of her local community.  Through this project, Lizzie helped create shows that would connect different groups of people.  

Sammy Cousino - Class of 2019

Growing up in the city of Chicago, Sammy witnessed inequality firsthand. She saw the disparity among different neighborhoods of her hometown and the schools within them. The injustices Sammy saw within the bounds of the third largest city in the United States prompted her to study various social justice issues and act on them.

Subhash Gutti - Class of 2019

Subhash’s passion for service began as an outgrowth from his interest in the field of healthcare. Strongly fascinated by biological sciences for as long as he can remember, he quickly took opportunities to explore his interest – through academic team competition, science fairs, science olympiad, and eventually by delving straight into the realm of healthcare by applying as a teen volunteer with his local hospital (Pikeville Medical Center).

Kelly Hunt - Class of 2019

Throughout her high school career, Kelly was involved in a variety of extracurricular/academic activities, but her most life-altering experiences have been the community service projects that have sculpted her servant’s heart. Her most encouraging projects include her involvement with Sumner County’s Special Education Program and Tennessee 4-H All Stars.

Robert Lee - Class of 2019

I arrived in Scarsdale, New York from my home in Memphis for my junior and senior years in high school as a member of the Scarsdale Transfer Education Program (STEP). Knowing no one, and being really far away from my family, I was inspired to take advantage of every opportunity to become involved in my new Scarsdale High School community. I joined a variety of clubs that served the less fortunate, including Midnight Run, Global Camps for Africa, Habitat for Humanity, and Hawthorne Cedar Knolls, and became a member of the Youth Actions Committee at my local church.

Camille Powers - Class of 2019

Motivated by a strong desire to serve, Camille has actively participated in the South Texas community. Energized by her summer camp experiences working with people who have disabilities as well as working with people who are homeless at a San Antonio soup kitchen, Camille developed her passion to be the voice for those who are underestimated, overlooked, or unheard.

Kyle Schwartz - Class of 2019

Diagnosed with Autism at age three, Kyle began occupational therapy and social guidance early on in his childhood. Years later, at the beginning of high school, Kyle decided to thank those who helped along the way by giving back to the community though volunteer work.

Priya Trivedi - Class of 2019

Attending a high school that placed heavy emphasis on service learning, Priya began exploring service opportunities early in her high school career. She was given ample opportunities to explore multiple facets of social service, and has since become involved with advocacy for those with disabilities, women’s rights, youth empowerment, and leadership development.

Haydon Tucker - Class of 2019

Haydon has cultivated a love for service to others since childhood, but this love began to manifest itself with more direction as she began working with her school’s community service program in the ninth grade. Since that year, she has spent all weekday afternoons tutoring elementary school students in the low-income west side of Chattanooga. Through this experience, Haydon gained countless friends, a passion for the inner city, and a new appreciation for the empowering nature of education and literacy, a principle that guided many of her future service endeavors.

Meredith Waites - Class of 2019

Meredith found her passion for helping others during her first year of high school when she began working with underprivileged children through local churches and the public school system to promote education equality.

Vivian Wanjohi - Class of 2019

Vivian's close knit community in a small rural town in Kenya built a sense of social responsibility in her and she engaged in community service activities from a very young age. She frequently participated in charity walks, health camps, student tutoring and town cleanups all through grade school and high school. After high school, Vivian joined a local children's home as a volunteer and it was here that the significance of community service to her was enhanced.


Hytham Al-Hindi - Class of 2018

Hytham’s passion for community engagement flourished during high school, when he founded his school’s Habitat for Humanity chapter and served as the Student Activist Coordinator for Amnesty International in the states of Arkansas and Mississippi. 

Christopher Chew - Class of 2018

Due to his involvement with his local youth group, Chris developed a strong interest in volunteerism and community outreach. In the summer before his junior year, Chris was given the opportunity to travel with his youth group to San Raimundo, Guatemala with the organization Casas Por Cristo. There he built two houses for the local villages and distributed paperback and audio taped Bibles in both Spanish and English. Chris was able to return to Guatemala the next year and construct two more houses. These mission trips were amazing eye-opening experiences that allowed Chris to find his true passion for service.

Alexis Cook - Class of 2018

After serving as a Sunday school teacher and volunteer at the local jail while in high school, Alexis decided to defer college and instead embark on the KIVU Gap Year to learn more about God, herself, and others through service and travel. Over the course of eight months, she lived in 5 countries with an internship in each for a total of over 900 internship hours. 

Sophie Goddyn - Class of 2018

Sophie’s passion for social justice began in the third grade, writing math problems for the boy who sat next to her in class. He had Down syndrome, and he became one of her closest friends. With the help of her new friend and his family, Sophie began her service endeavors volunteering her first of six years at Bike First!, a camp in which she taught children with disabilities how to ride two-wheel bikes. This program fostered her passion for advocating for those with disabilities.

Naeha Haridasa - Class of 2018

After spending ten years at Chinmaya Mission (Hindu Sunday school) with the motto “Give more than what you take”, Naeha began to develop a passion for social justice.

Josiah Holland - Class of 2018

Since moving as a 5th grader to the United States from Togo, Africa, Josiah has made a priority of engaging his local community through service and the building of relationships.   In high school, Josiah worked through student council to organize community events and fundraisers benefitting local and national charities.  Josiah also served with his church community by teaching children’s classes and spent the entire summer of 2014 as a youth camp counselor.  Additionally, through his church, Josiah discovered multiple opportunities to build relationships with the homeless of downtown Fort Worth, Texas, through Beautiful Feet Ministries and the Feed by Grace program at Unity Park.

Catherine Jackson - Class of 2018

With a family history of serving the community, Catherine began volunteering at a young age. Through her church and youth group, Catherine explored service opportunities in her community and attended yearly mission trips. At the beginning of high school, she discovered her passion for serving others while volunteering with a local homeless shelter – Room In the Inn. Since then, Catherine has pursued various opportunities to serve the homeless community in Nashville.

Kyuhoon Kim - Class of 2018

Kyuhoon’s involvement in service as a first-year student at Vanderbilt was a continuation from his pre-college experience in service; in high school he was inspired by the desire to improve his mother’s status as an immigrant to Korea in serving the immigrant and culturally disadvantaged population in his home nation. When he first arrived in Nashville, or more broadly the U.S., he sought to develop upon this familiarity by identifying the population in similar needs.

Lauren McCabe - Class of 2018

During her freshman year at Vanderbilt, Lauren continued her work from high school by focusing on social issues regarding education, but expanded this passion to working with the intellectually disabled.  Through Vanderbilt’s Next Steps post-secondary college program for young adults with disabilities, Lauren tutored, spent time with, and was a teaching assistant.  Working with the same students each week, Lauren developed strong friendships with her Next Steps companions and was exposed to many of the barriers these individuals have and will face.

Emily Meffert - Class of 2018

During her first year at Vanderbilt, Emily became acquainted with the city of Nashville by serving with various campus service organizations—namely, Vanderbilt Grassroots, Habitat for Humanity, and The Afterschool Program (TAP).

Caroline Mulligan - Class of 2018

Caroline began her service career in middle school with monthly events to serve the Minneapolis-St. Paul inner-city community. In high school, she expanded her commitments by undertaking bigger projects, such as trips to Belize, where she updated an elementary school’s facilities and aided teachers in class, and Ndola, Zambia, where she was part of a 5-year long effort to improve a medical clinic by teaching doctors to use donated equipment from the United States.

Faith Noah - Class of 2018

After fostering a deep commitment to service at her high school alma mater Ursuline Academy—which bears the motto Serviam (“I will serve”)—Faith spent her freshman year learning about several areas of need in the Nashville community.

Interested in access to healthcare, Faith got involved at Faith Family Medical Center, which provides low-cost healthcare to the uninsured in Nashville. Their well-rounded and patient-centered approach appealed to Faith’s passion for merging her interests in medicine with her love of service.

Megan Nocita - Class of 2018

Megan first became interested in service during her high school years. As a member of her school’s service club, she began volunteering as a freshman. As her time in high school progressed, she realized service was her passion and began to take a leadership role. This progression led to her role as president of her school’s service-based National Honor Society her senior year.

Matt OKeefe - Class of 2018

During his first year at Vanderbilt, Matt found a place to continue his high school passion for combating hunger in the Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee. Being able to serve in a fulfilling capacity gave him a welcome respite from schoolwork. No matter what job was being done, it was always rewarding, knowing that he was making a difference

Urvi Patwardhan - Class of 2018

Urvi spent much of her high school career participating in various service opportunities. She found particular interest in volunteering at the Bluegrass Indo-American Civic Society and the Teen Court Program. She also started two initiatives: the Youth Volunteers Across Lexington Unite (Youth VALU) Service Initiative and the Story Cellar Program.

Daniel Shaykevich - Class of 2018

Daniel's service career began early on, when he joined the Cub Scouts in elementary school and first began to take part in community events. His involvement increased in high school as he participated in activities around the community with the Pocono Mountain East Leo Club, helping at pancake breakfasts that benefited local causes, holding drives at school to aid charities, and hosting a monthly game night that gave all students, including those in the special education program, a chance to socialize and enjoy themselves. 

Amarachukwu Uzoka - Class of 2018

Amarachukwu has always had a deep passion for kids, strongly rooted in all of the volunteer work she has done for her home church. In addition to serving as Secretary to the youth ministry and Sunday school teacher’s aide, Amara also channeled her love of singing by co-founding her church’s youth choir. In the process, she noticed that children and young adults rarely believed in themselves or in their abilities enough to work hard. 


Gerard Franks - Class of 2017

Gerard’s desire for community involvement and public service stems from his early involvement in service projects during his high school career. He volunteered at various hospitals and community organizations such as the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma and Make Promises Happen, a special needs camp. His volunteer opportunities along with life experiences have created a devotion to volunteerism that he continued at Vanderbilt.

Hannah Lazarz - Class of 2017

Hannah’s passion lies in working with under-represented, underprivileged, and often misunderstood groups of individuals, cultivating in them a sense of self worth and the ability to contribute to a community—most often through the performing arts.  Inspired both by her faith and her family, Hannah’s commitment to service is a fruit of the love that comes from respecting the dignity of every human being.  In the words of her role model, St. Therese of Lisieux, “Without love, deeds, even the most brilliant, count as nothing.”

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