Lechowicz Honored with State Community Service Award

Cathy Lechowicz, director of the Center for Community Partnerships, right, displaying her award with William Dyson, chairman of the Connecticut Commission on Community Service, and Jane Ciarleglio, executive director of the Commission.

Cathy Lechowicz, director of the Center for Community Partnerships, right, displaying her award with William Dyson, chairman of the Connecticut Commission on Community Service, and Jane Ciarleglio, executive director of the Commission.

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Cathy Lechowicz, director of the Center for Community Partnerships, was one of six people honored with a 2015 Community Service Award by the Connecticut Commission on Community Service and the Office of Higher Education. The winners–drawn from college students, campus programs and faculty and staff–were recognized at a ceremony April 14 at the Connecticut State Capitol.

This was the 23rd annual awards ceremony conducted by the Connecticut Commission on Community Service. More than 50 students, faculty and staff attended the ceremony.

“I am humbled by the recognition and grateful to work with an incredible team of people at Allbritton, on campus and in the community,” said Lechowicz. “Wesleyan has been extremely supportive of our community engagement initiatives and I’m looking forward to further developing our programs.”

Lechowicz was nominated for the award by Rob Rosenthal, director of the Allbritton Center for the Study of Public Life, John E. Andrus Professor of Sociology, for her outstanding work as Wesleyan’s former director of community service and current director of the Center for Community Partnerships. Wesleyan’s community engagement was recently recognized both through a Carnegie Community Engagement Classification and named by the Princeton Review as #1 on the list of “Best Schools for Making an Impact.” Rosenthal attributed this largely to Lechowicz’s contributions.

In his nomination letter, Rosenthal pointed to Lechowicz’s work with the Green Street Teaching and Learning Center. In his nomination letter, Rosenthal wrote in the letter, “In three years, Cathy has achieved incredible results: Wesleyan’s financial contribution has been cut almost in half, total visitors have more than doubled, student involvement has more than doubled, and faculty involvement has tripled. The future of the center, vitally important to the residents of the North End, has gone from highly uncertain to secure, an amazing turnaround.”

Rosenthal also commended Lechowicz for her work with the Center for Prison Education.

“Again, under Cathy’s direction and the work of several staff members over the years, the program has flourished,” he wrote. “The Center now provides a program in the women’s prison at York as well as the men’s prison at Cheshire. In the 2013-14 school year, 54 students were taking classes. Over 20 professors (mainly Wesleyan, but others as well) have taught classes ranging from Molecular Biology to Political Philosophy, and always at the same level as they teach these classes to their undergraduate students. Additionally, over 130 Wesleyan undergraduates have served as teaching assistants, writing tutors, research interns, and workshop facilitators. Finally, the Center has been extremely successful securing funding.”