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DeDon wins Newman Civic Fellow Award

Jay DeDon, winner of Florida Campus Compact Award 2013Jay DeDon, a junior music education major at Stetson, has received The Newman Civic Fellows Award. DeDon is one of 181 students who have been recognized as the next generation of public problem solvers and civic leaders. Through service, research, and advocacy, Newman Civic Fellows are making the most of their college experiences to better understand themselves, the root causes of social issues, and effective mechanisms for creating lasting change.

Through a wide range of experiences at local disadvantaged schools as well as studies in his major, DeDon has learned firsthand the effects of poverty on educational success and college accessibility. For that reason, DeDon is developing a college access program for 52 middle schools in Central Florida. This program is designed to attract students from disadvantaged middle schools who have a passion for music performance and education. It will bring young men and women to Stetson’s DeLand campus for free workshops and lessons with Stetson School of Music students and faculty.

Given the public school funding challenges and family-based hardships that such students face, DeDon’s program will be one of the only opportunities for these youth to engage in a community that embraces music education and scholarship while nurturing their musical interests and talents. Through this exposure, these students can realize that a college education is both desirable and possible, thereby increasing the likelihood that they will pursue a college education and break the cycle of poverty to which many of them are accustomed.

The Newman Civic Fellows Awards are made possible through the generous support of the KPMG Foundation. For a full list of the 2013 Newman Civic Fellows, please visit:  http://www.compact.org/initiatives/awards-programs/the-frank-newman-leadership-award/the-2013-newman-civic-fellows/

by Sarah Taylor