Dalton Hoffer, a senior mass communication major from Sneads Ferry, N.C., is the 2012 recipient of the Community Impact Student Award at UNC Pembroke.
One student at each of the 40 participating colleges and universities receives the award from the North Carolina Campus Compact, whose mission is to promote civic engagement among college students. Hoffer is truly an engaged and engaging student and a model of how civic engagement strengthens communities and the students who participate.
As one of eight community development student service leaders, Hoffer organized the annual campus-wide Day of Service. His work has addressed literacy, homelessness, hunger, teen outreach and more. He is also the community service chair for Greek Life at UNCP.
CCE Director of Service-Learning Christie Poteet was not surprised at the selection.
“Dalton is a great example of what student engagement looks like,” Poteet said. “He is responsible, ambitious and aware of the needs on his campus and community and his work attempts to make those two things work together.
“His hard work has changed the lives of the students he motivates and the community with which he engages. He is known on campus as a go-getter, a mover and a shaker, and that’s exactly what he is,” she continued. “I am so proud of Dalton and all that he and his peer student service leaders have accomplished.”
Every day seems to bring a new opportunity for Hoffer to volunteer. Recently, he spent three hours at Sacred Pathways, a Pembroke crisis ministry, putting their Internet service back online. On October 20, he painted faces for the local Boys and Girls Club’s fall festival.
The Impact Award will be presented to Hoffer in abstentia at the Campus Compact Student Conference which will be held at UNC Wilmington Saturday, November 3.
“I have rehearsal that evening,” Hoffer said. “I am playing Seymour (the lead role) in “Little Shop of Horrors.” Since arriving on campus, Hoffer has been in the cast of every major campus musical, and he is minoring in musical theatre.
Hoffer who is from Sneads Ferry, N.C., has found plenty to engage him at UNCP, and he’s found a direction for the future. He plans to go to graduate school, a goal he admits was far from his mind just a few years ago.
“As a freshman, there is no way I thought about graduate school,” Hoffer said. “I have developed a passion for student affairs and higher education administration.”
By any measure, Hoffer has had a successful college experience, and the Impact Award is not his only award. His fraternity, Theta Xi, was recently named UNCP’s Fraternity of the Year, and he is President of the Year among Greeks.
Hoffer passes his experiences on through talking with first year students in Freshman Seminar, which is the high school to college transition course all freshmen must take.
“When I talk to new students, I tell them that being involved is the key to success in college,” he said. “Pembroke has the same opportunities as other universities.”
To be nominated for the Impact Award, Hoffer had the support of his fellow student service leaders at the Office of Community and Civic Engagement (CCE). Here is what they said in the recommendation:
“Dalton actively and consistently serves in the community and inspires other students to become engaged citizens as well. He serves as a resource to engage students in initiatives and efforts that address social and educational disparities in the local community.
“Dalton connected over 120 college mentors with 230 elementary students with the Public Schools of Robeson County to provide more than 300 hours of service. He works to build capacity with community partners. Over the summer, Dalton conducted a community assessment that empowered UNCP to better serve the region and make the most meaningful impact to aid community capacity building.”
Hoffer is humbled by the vote of confidence from his peers. “This award is a great honor for me, and it’s nice to know I had the support of my peers,” he said. “I voted for someone else because they are all deserving.”
To contact the Office of Community and Civic Engagement, please call 910.521.6163 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.