George Mason University
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George Mason University

CHHS Students Win SAIL Seeds of Change Community Engagement Awards

May 21, 2020   /   by Danielle Hawkins

Continuing a long-standing tradition, the Social Action and Integrative Learning (SAIL) office honored students, faculty, staff, and community partners with Seeds of Change Community Engagement awards. These awards recognize the selfless leadership, service, and activism by members of the Mason community in partnership with organizations on and off-campus. 

CHHS SAIL Award Winners include:

Asra Ahmad wins Julie Owens Award

Caption: SAIL recognized Asra Ahmad for her outstanding leadership and advocacy during her time as a graduate student.

  • Dr. Julie Owen Active Citizen Award - The Dr. Julie Owen Award is named for a current Mason faculty member who has been a fierce advocate, supporter and champion of community engagement and honors a graduate student who has made outstanding contributions by being engaged in their community.

Asra Ahmad received this award for her leadership and advocacy as a graduate student. She is a Master’s in Public Health (MPH) student with a concentration in Public Health Communication.

Asra has interned at national advocacy organizations such as Every Child Fed and the Global Fund for Children, working on combatting child malnutrition and to advance the rights of children and youth globally. She has provided subject matter and administrative support to SAMHSA’s interagency task force on trauma-informed care, tasked by Congress with developing recommendations for mitigating the impact of the opioid epidemic through reducing adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), keeping first-responders safe from experiencing trauma on the job, and reducing the impact of opioid-related trauma in American Communities.

She was also recognized for serving as the president of the student organization Graduate Students for Public Health, mentoring and leading Mason’s Peer Health Educator program, HIV advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill, and for planning HIV/STI testing events for 200 students at Mason.

  • Community Engagement Medallion - This year, 27 graduating seniors were honored with the Community Engagement Medallion which recognizes graduates  who have excelled in their commitment to the community through volunteerism, issue advocacy, community work-study, and political engagement. CHHS winners include:
    • Jessica Barranco, Global and Community Health
    • Juliette DeGraff, Global and Community Health
    • Tasneem Elbackush , Global and Community Health
    • Angelica Felder, Global and Community Health
    • Nattacha Munakata, Global and Community Health
    • Matthew Palagyi, Global and Community Health

Congratulations also to the nominees from CHHS!

  • Active Citizen Award
    • Magaly L Cabrera-Ortiz, Global and Community Health  
  • Dr. Julie Owen Award
    • Stephani R. Keen, Nutrition and Food Studies 
    • Francisco Morin, Nursing
  • Engaged Faculty Award
    • Sharolyn Dugger, Population Health Center 
    • Dr. Michael von Fricken, Global and Community Health 
    • Dr. Patrice Winter, Global and Community Health
  • Outstanding Partnership Award
    • Mason and Partners (MAP) Clinics with Dr. Rebecca Sutter, Dr. Caroline Sutter, Dr. Shanti Lloyd, Dr. Valenzuela, Global and Community Health/MAP Clinic staff, faculty and students; Dr. Carrie Bonilla, Modern and Classical Languages, and Dr. Robyn Mehlenbeck, GMU Center for Psychological Services


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