Sophomore Amy Chen receives Newman Civic Fellow Award

Sophomore AMY CHEN has received a 2011 Newman Civic Fellow Award from Campus Compact. Chen, a human biology major, was among the first group of award-winners—137 students from 30 states—who are finding solutions for challenges facing communities throughout the country. Newman Civic Fellows are nominated by college and university presidents to acknowledge motivation and ability in public leadership.
“I believe Amy will make significant contributions to the Newman Civic Fellows community and the health care field, just as she is doing at Stanford,” wrote President John Hennessy in Chen’s nomination letter.

Chen is passionate about issues of organ transplantation, organ trafficking and medical tourism. Her goal is to change the organ transplantation sector of the health care industry, specifically in China, and she is building a substantial base of knowledge, skills and experience toward this end.

Motivated by personal experience with liver cancer in her family, Chen has written research papers on the sociocultural effects of hepatitis B and liver cancer, as well as the traumatic effects of organ harvesting in China. Among her many extracurricular commitments, Chen interns at Stanford’s Asian Liver Center developing curriculum and conducting outreach for international health education initiatives. This summer, Chen will travel to China to pursue research on attitudes toward organ donation and transplantation, and on China’s current pilot program to improve organ donation education.

In addition, Chen is furthering her leadership skills through the Haas Center’s Public Service Leadership Program. Last summer she served as a Stanford in Government fellow at the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy.

“Public service gives me the perfect outlet to take everything I love—health care, kids and education—and explore the best way to put it all together, all the while trying to change the world in my own way,” Chen says. “To me, life is all about the people. Apathy is out of the question; it is only through actions that I can truly express my love for learning more about others around me.”

Campus Compact is a national coalition of more than 1,100 college and university presidents—representing some 6 million students—who are committed to fulfilling the civic purposes of higher education to improve community life and to educate students for civic and social responsibility. Through the Newman Civic Fellows Awards, named for the late Frank Newman, one of the founders of Campus Compact and a founding member of the Haas Center’s National Advisory Board, college and university presidents acknowledge students with the ability and motivation to create lasting change in our communities.

– Katie Pfeiffer