Bloustein School announces 2013-14 Voorhees Public Service Fellows

June 20, 2013

rwf-2013In early 2009, the Bloustein School established theRalph W. Voorhees Public Service Fellowship Program through an endowment from the Voorhees family to honor Ralph W. Voorhees for his commitment to community public service.

The fellowships are designed to help Rutgers undergraduates take advantage of the university’s service-learning opportunities, engage with Rutgers’ community partners, and to connect the students’ education with the experience of participating in local community life. The students are selected from a competitive undergraduate applicant pool of all majors at Rutgers‑New Brunswick.

In the fall of 2013 the undergraduate fellows will work with Elijah’s Promise and the New Brunswick Community Food Alliance to support their efforts to increase community food security in New Brunswick. The five fellows will conduct a garden assessment to better understand what community gardeners are growing, how they use their produce, and how much they grow. The students will research how gardeners in New York City and Philadelphia weigh and track produce and, in partnership with New Brunswick community gardeners, create a system to do the same. In addition, they will develop a farm-to-freezer guide for individuals and community institutions and research and produce a short report and fact sheet that explores how CSAs, farm markets and other community food efforts can use SNAP benefits and other food programs to increase access to local produce for people in communities that lack it.

The five fellows selected for the 2013-2014 academic year are:

Abdul Abad
Abdul B. Abad is a Philosophy major with a Linguistics minor. He transferred to Rutgers University after completing an associate’s degree at Hudson County Community College. In addition to serving as a resident assistant at Cook Campus’s Voorhees Hall, he is president of the Phi Sigma Tau Philosophy Honors Society, a member of the Community Review Board, a member of the Resident Assistant Advisory Board, and this summer he is interning at the Institute for Recruitment of Teachers. He also worked as a research assistant for the Rutgers Phonology and Field Research Laboratory directed by Professor Paul de Lacy, where  he collected data on field methods in Phonology. Upon graduation, he would like to  pursue a master’s degree in higher education policy and administration with a focus on social justice and diversity.

Katherine Fudacz
Katherine Fudacz is an international environmental policy major with a minor in Spanish. In July 2013, she will study abroad in Oaxaca, Mexico as a volunteer with Puente a la Salud Comunitaria, where she will work with the Eco Amaranth program. As part of this program, she will learn about harvesting amaranth while teaching local communities about amaranth’s health, economic and environmental benefits. Following her trip abroad, she will investigate the feasibility of growing, purchasing and commercializing amaranth to enhance community food security in New Brunswick’s Oaxacan communities. The research will inform her George H. Cook thesis on amaranth in global and local markets. Katie is also an Institute of Women’s Leadership Scholar and will complete a 500-hour social action project during the fall 2013. She has been engaged in many activities both on- and off-campus including serving as president of her dormitory, as a peer instructor for the Environmental Policy First-Year Interest Group, as an intern at the New Jersey Public Interest Research Group (NJPIRG), is a member of the Cook campus agricultural honors/service fraternity Alpha Zeta, and writes for the Environmental Policy newspaper, EPIB Trail.  She also attended Georgetown University where she interned for Conservation International – Center of Environmental Leadership in Business.

Kevin Dahaghi
Kevin Dahaghi  is a senior in the School of Arts and Sciences with a double major in sociology and journalism and media studies, and a minor in Social Justice. Kevin served as a research assistant to Dr. Lauren Krivo, whom he met through the Ronald E. McNair Program, and assisted with the analysis of non-residential movement patterns of racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups at the neighborhood-level. He was an instructor in the First-year Interest Group Seminars (FIGS) program, where he taught the basics of sociology to first-year students. He now serves the program as a senior peer instructor, mentoring incoming peer instructors and consulting on programmatic changes. He has served two 300-hour terms as a Bonner Leader at Rutgers Upward Bound, a college access program in New Brunswick and Piscataway. Moreover, he has served as a Rutgers Future Scholars mentor for two years. This summer, he will study crime and deviance as a research assistant at the University of Texas-Austin. Upon graduation Kevin hopes to teach abroad on a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship (ETA) before entering a Ph.D. program in Sociology. His intends to become a sociology professor.

Erin Maguire
Erin Maguire spent her first two years of college at the Richard Stockton College where she enrolled in a new major every semester, including psychology, public health, and environmental science. After taking some time off to travel, she found her passion in sustainable agriculture as she worked her way through Italy on organic farms. Upon returning from her travels she transferred to Rutgers, where she became an environmental policy major and designed her own concentration in sustainable food systems. She calls herself an AmeriCorps Junkie; while at Stockton she completed two terms of service with Energy Service Corps, a campaign of the New Jersey Fund for the Public Interest. As part of her service she taught children about energy conservation and showed adults how to make their homes more energy efficient. She recently interned at the New Brunswick Community Food Alliance as a Bonner Leader, and is looking to continuing her work with the New Brunswick Community Food Alliance as a Voorhees Fellow.

Sarthi Tuli
Sarthi Tuli is a junior in the School of Arts and Sciences, majoring in Economics, Mathematics and Statistics. He was born in Haryana, India and immigrated to the United States at age 15. At Rutgers, he is a member of the Delta Upsilon Fraternity and serves as the vice president for academic excellence. He is also a member of Omicron Delta Epsilon, the economics honors society. He has worked as a research assistant for Professor Michael Bordo, assisting with various projects ranging from the financial history of the 19th century to the 2008 economic recession. He is also a research assistant at the National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER), where he conducts data analyses for different studies. He serves as the assistant director for marketing for the Rutgers University Programming Association (RUPA). He also worked as a grant writer for Coming Home of Middlesex County, a non-profit organization aiming to eliminate homelessness in the county. Sarthi is also a tutor for various subjects at the Kreeger Learning Resource Center at Rutgers, is a resident assistant for the New Gibbons Residence Hall on Douglass Campus and is part of the Rutgers debate team, currently ranked third in the country. After graduation, Sarthi hopes to pursue doctoral studies in economics.

A 1948 graduate of Rutgers University, Ralph W. Voorhees was senior vice president for investments at Paine Weber and served as chairman of the boards of the United Way of Central New Jersey, Family Counseling Services of Middlesex County, the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, and the New Brunswick Cultural Center. He has been chairman of the Rutgers University Foundation and has served on the Rutgers University Foundation’s Board of Overseers. Mr. Voorhees has given generously to Rutgers and supports Voorhees College, a historically black higher education institution in South Carolina.


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