Alfred State’s own Riko Hayano recently attended the Newman Civic Fellows Annual Convening at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the US Senate in Boston.
Hayano, an interdisciplinary studies major from Osaka, Japan, was able to attend the event because she was named a Campus Compact Newman Civic Fellow for 2019-20. The Newman Civic Fellowship is a one-year experience emphasizing personal, professional, and civic growth for students who have demonstrated a capacity for leadership and an investment in solving public problems. Campus Compact is a national coalition of more than 1,000 colleges and universities committed to strengthening democracy through civic education and community development.
At the Newman Civic Fellows Annual Convening, attendees take part in two days of learning, sharing, and growing as a cohort. According to the Edward M. Kennedy Institute, the conference drew more than 200 participants from across the country who “took part in productive group conversations on policy and community-based change, heard from civic leaders, and made their voices heard through programs in the Institute’s full-scale replica Senate chamber.”
During the conference, Hayano learned how to better engage in civic leadership, was able to have discussions with Boston City Councilor Lydia Edwards, and networked with exceptional change-makers from across the country. The weekend also included numerous activities that allowed participants to learn in-depth about different leadership styles that Fellows are using in their communities.
“As an international student who is not pursuing academics in the political field, it was truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get a closer look at the inner structure of American government and to represent Alfred State and my home country at the same time,” Hayano said. “I left feeling extremely honored, motivated, and confident in what other Fellows have in store for our future, community, and nation as a whole.”