Passion Projects

Students receive grants for service projects

Mia Rossi,

“At the time of his death, I was working for Northampton Community College’s (NCC) Center for Civic and Community Engagement (CCCE),” said Marcia Stewart, who established CCCE Student Service Project Endowment in her late husband, Craig T. Stewart’s honor, “I wanted to give back to the community by establishing a legacy in Craig’s name that would pay it forward and help as many people as possible. I felt that by setting up an endowment to provide funds for student service projects was the best way to serve the community and help the greatest number of people.”

The endowment allows students to serve the community and the college in ways they wouldn’t be able to without funding.

Craig, a kind and generous man, volunteered as a youth baseball coach and youth bowling coach for many years and believed in service to the community. A Grant Awards Presentation was held on December 4 on Bethlehem Campus where three students explained their mission in service. 

Danielle Hanson, PTK President, has a passion for financial literacy. With her project, “Your Money Where Your Mouth Is,” she and her team educate students on resources for students who are concerned about affording college. Hanson heard new students at NCC orientations discuss how they can budget for NCC, from everyday living expenses to college itself. Hanson said, “some students even needed financial skills training on things like how to write checks properly,” which surprised her.

Hanson uses the grant money to inform students about scholarship opportunities through PTK, partner with financial aid and PSECU to bring financial literacy events to NCC sites, host panel events and finance-based Escape Rooms, and more.

Imani Bradford lives and works in the residence halls on Bethlehem Campus and is from Blue Bell, PA. She was motivated to start “The Glitz Project” after an experience she had in high school. Her family just lost their house and was struggling with finances around the time she was asked to her prom. She agreed to go, and with very little resources, decided it would be more practical to make her dress.

Despite the challenges she faced, she had a wonderful time at her prom.  It became important to her that no one miss out on their own prom because of being in a financial bind. The “Glitz Project” gives students in high school used prom dresses, shoes and accessories and holds workshops on how to manage money before and after prom season, self-care and how to create a prom dress if students choose to do so. Bradford worked with the company, Our Fairy God Mother, to get this up and running.

“When I serve, it’s something that I love and picks me up a lot,” says Bradford. 

Laura Rex, PTK secretary, decided to do her “2019 Honors in Action Project” on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) as it relates to underserved students. Rex and her team of students do outreach to get young students more involved in studying and excelling in these subject areas.

Her team went to Trexler Middle School to speak with eighth graders and get them interested in STEM. Rex had a table at the middle school’s annual carnival and brought in activities related such as an engineering puzzle cube, math trivia and more. Rex’s team also went to a preschool and donated magnifying glasses to be used for science activities in class.

“These visits and activities seemed to create a buzz around how fun STEM could be and encouraged learning STEM skills,” said Rex.

All three students are taking service to the next level with these amazing passion projects for the community.