In 2016, we lost our co-founder and friend, Bernie Ronan, after a long struggle with cancer.  Bernie was tireless in his work for democracy, and every element of The Democracy Commitment network bears his imprint.  He was an organizer, advocate, leader, and an eloquent spokesman for community college students. He was also a profound theorist of democratic culture, and wrote about the significance of democratic engagement in the lives of students.

In honor of his tremendous devotion and commitment to TDC and the national civic engagement movement, we renamed our TDC student scholarship award after him last year.  The “Bernie Ronan Award” will stand as a living testimony to this good and loyal friend. We will miss him deeply.

Announcing the Third Annual Bernie Ronan Award

At the 2013 national meeting, The Democracy Commitment announced that, starting in 2014, we would select for special recognition a student-initiated or -directed project or program that exemplifies the democratic skills and capacities we desire of our students.

We are pleased to announce a call for nominations for that award, our third annual Bernie Ronan Award to be given to a student team from a TDC institution.

Criteria and Submission Process

Each TDC campus coordinator is invited to submit for consideration one student project from his or her institution that meets the following criteria:

  1. A student project or program aimed at addressing a significant political and/or social issue
  2. A project that involved a team of students (2+)
  3. A project with student leadership, where faculty and staff served mainly in an advisory or supporting role
  4. A project that demonstrated the democratic organizing skills of students

These submissions must be sent via email to Verdis Robinson, the interim TDC National Manager, and include the following information:

  • Students’ names and contact information (email addresses and phone numbers)
  • Name of the project or program they were/are involved in
  • A paragraph explaining the reason for the nomination and why they should be selected

The deadline for these submissions has past and award winners will be announced shortly.  Instructions for the upcoming award is forthcoming.

The Award

The award includes the following:

  • A recognition plaque and/or certificates for the team
  • $1,000.00 to be divided equally between the students identified by the campus coordinator as the effective participants in the project or program (If ten students were included in the nomination, each gets $100; if it is two students, each gets $500, etc.)

Please note: At least one student from the selected team should plan to attend the 2016 Civic Learning & Democratic Engagement (CLDE) Meeting.

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