An initiative is being started to recognize students, faculty and staff who have the “Troy Trojan Heart” and encompass the spirit of servant leadership — including a $1,000 charitable donation as a reward.
First Lady Janice Hawkins and several administrators, students and faculty members are organizing the effort to encourage good deeds.
Hawkins said she came up with the idea after experiencing a challenging six months, including a near-death experience for her daughter and surgery for both her and her husband.
“Every time you turn anything on, you just are so challenged by the troubles in the world and in the country,” she said.
She said her inspiration for the project came from a MassMutual Life Insurance ad on TV. The commercial shows people performing acts of service and kindness.
“It really spoke to me, and thinking about it, I just really wanted to find a way to incorporate it into the university,” she said. “I think that our students are among the most giving, generous students with their time and their money and their volunteering.”
“The Troy Trojan Heart is a reminder of what it means to serve others,” said Hal Fulmer, associate provost and dean of undergraduate and first-year studies.
According to Fulmer, the goal is to call attention to the things people do for others because of who Trojans are as a people.
“I would really like Troy to be a more loving and caring place where we celebrate the little good things that happen all the time,” said Avery Livingston, coordinator for the Office of Civic Engagement. “We kind of take for granted how nice and wonderful a community we have here, and I think we should celebrate that more often.”
Anyone can nominate a fellow Trojan they feel should be recognized for a good deed, and the one who performs the most noteworthy good deed will be honored through a donation to their favorite off-campus nonprofit organization or charity.
The nomination form will be available through the Office of Civic Engagement in 122 Eldridge Hall. Details will be posted on social media with the hashtag
#TROYTrojanHeart. Information is available from firstname.lastname@example.org.
The deadline for the first round of nominations is April 20. The person submitting a nomination can remain anonymous on request. The winning doer of a good deed will get to name a nonprofit that will receive $1,000.
The project will continue into future semesters.
Hawkins said donations will be privately funded, and she will be raising the money herself.