September 08, 2016
Michelle Adams O'Regan
Communications and Marketing
Two seniors, Maggie Walker and Trevor Patton, were selected to receive the Thomas A. Melucci Jr. Memorial Endowed Scholarship, which provides full tuition to seniors who have demonstrated significant spiritual and personal growth throughout their college careers.
Walker, who is from Laconia, N.H., is a nursing major and psychology minor, as well as a Dance Team captain and an Orientation Leader. She has participated in one Spring Break Alternative Trip already, and will be a team leader on a Winter Break Alternative Trip to New Orleans this year.
Through Dance Team, Walker is also involved in service, working to find opportunities to engage the team in community service, participating in charity events on campus, and teaching dance to children at Girls Inc. every week. But her commitment to helping others goes even deeper, through her work with the John Sununu Youth Services Center, a youth prison in Manchester where she started volunteering her freshman year. Now as the Meelia Center for Community Engagement Site Coordinator for the facility, she manages more than 15 students, as well as tutoring the youth residents and facilitating their growth within the community as a Public Achievement coach.
"She is a student with amazing courage and determination. After volunteering with adjudicated youth, she became determined to improve the support these kids have to redirect their lives," says Dan Forbes, director of the Meelia Center. "While the state moves slowly in researching and improving its delivery of service, she is the strong and persistent force pushing it to do exactly that: improve."
"When I heard I was chosen to receive the Melucci Scholarship, I was in shock," says Walker. "Even to be nominated for the scholarship was such an honor, but to actually be chosen was unbelievable."
Patton is a biochemistry major from Damascus, Maryland who hopes to attend medical school and become a physician in the future. With Professor Elizabeth Greguske, he is working on an INBRE grant for his second summer, studying bacteria phages as a way to overcome viruses. He is also engaged in research with Professor Joseph Troisi in the Psychology department, studying drug addiction and social factors impacting relapses.
Outside the lab, Patton is very involved in campus activities, as Vice President of the Probe and Scalpel Club, a Transitions mentor to incoming freshmen, and a former member of the Sophomore Council. He credits Saint Anselm's Benedictine values with inspiring him to become involved with community service, and during his time here, has become very involved with the VA Medical Center. Now as the Meelia Center Site Coordinator for the VA, he works with 12 Saint Anselm student volunteers and coordinates their experiences, as well as devoting many hours to his own volunteer work as an emotional and spiritual counselor to hospice and palliative care veterans.
According to Forbes, "Trevor engaged in service at the Manchester Veterans Hospital in his freshman year at Saint Anselm, and was immediately drawn to the elderly vets. His willingness to assume the added responsibility of growing that partnership has resulted in many more students visiting the veterans each week, and the hospital integrating those students more effectively into the care of the patients."
Patton describes himself as "really thrilled" to receive the Thomas A. Melucci Jr. Memorial Endowed Scholarship, which was established by Thomas and Gail Melucci, as a way to memorialize their son, Thomas Jr. '88. The generous Anselmian parents remain closely involved with the scholarship, serving on the committee that selects recipients each year.