Ohio Wesleyan Student Honored for Work with Local Hispanic Community
April 7, 2011
Ohio Wesleyan’s 2010-2011 award recipient is sophomore Magdalena Jacobo, who is being recognized for her work as a volunteer Spanish translator at Delaware’s Woodward Family Resource Center. Jacobo, a biology major from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, spends about 10 hours a week at the center, where she helps families with employment applications, medical forms, parent-teacher conferences, and other translation needs.
She said one of her most rewarding experiences has been helping a Hispanic family to complete an application for a Habitat for Humanity house.
“I translated the application for them, and I attended their initial meetings at the county Habitat office, providing translation whenever needed,” Jacobo said. “In mid-December, I was asked to be the one to call them to let them know that their application had been approved. They are the first Hispanic family in Delaware to be chosen for a Habitat House, and they are currently working very hard to achieve their volunteer hours by helping to build a house for another family.”
Ohio Wesleyan President Rock Jones, Ph.D., said Jacobo’s commitment to community service is intense and infectious.
“Almost immediately upon her arrival in Delaware, Magdalena sought opportunities to be in service to the community,” Jones recalled. “Within days, she had found a home away from home working with the Hispanic families who visit the Woodward Family Resource Center. Her dedicated presence at the center signals that this is a safe place to seek help and access to much-needed translation services.”
He said Jacobo’s service has impacted not only the Delaware community, but the Ohio Wesleyan campus community as well.
“Magdalena’s leadership has taken the form of quietly recruiting her peers to serve with her,” Jones said. “Many of her friends have been persuaded to provide translation services in numerous settings. Magdalena’s contributions have built significant bridges of support and understanding between the campus and the community that will have lasting impact on the quality of life for all concerned.”
As part of her Ping Award, Jacobo will receive a $500 legacy grant, which she intends to split between Habitat for Humanity and the Woodward Family Resource Center.
The center, 200 S. Washington St., is a program of Action for Children, a private, nonprofit organization headquartered in Columbus. The center works in partnership with Delaware City Schools and collaborates with other service providers to support and strengthen local children and families.
The Ping Award is presented by the Ohio Campus Compact, a Granville, Ohio-based nonprofit coalition of 47 Ohio colleges and universities. The legacy grant is provided by State Farm Insurance.
Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier small, private universities, with more than 90 undergraduate majors, sequences, and courses of study, and 23 Division III varsity sports. Located in Delaware, Ohio, just minutes north of Ohio’s capital and largest city, Columbus, the university combines a globally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities that translate classroom theory into real-world practice. OWU’s close-knit community of 1,850 students represents 45 states and 52 countries. Ohio Wesleyan earned a 2009 Presidential Award for Excellence in General Community Service, is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” and is included on the “best colleges” lists of U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review. Learn more at www.owu.edu.
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