Harm, Vaillancourt Honored for Commitment to Service

From spending time with elementary school children in after-school programs to serving on community advisory boards, Danielle Harm and Katherine Vaillancourt are exemplary models of Alma College’s commitment to community service.

Michigan Campus Compact has honored Danielle Harm and Katherine Vaillancourt with Commitment to Service awards for their dedication to service.

<em>Danielle Harm</em> Danielle HarmDanielle Harm

Harm, a senior from Rochester, has been involved in many service initiatives on campus and in the community during her four years at Alma, including the annual Fall Festival, Relay for Life and After School Program with Alma Public Schools.

“Danielle has a strong passion for being an active citizen in her local community,” says Anne Ritz, service-learning coordinator. “In particular, she has been active in health-related volunteer opportunities. Through her sorority, she is an active supporter of Autism Speaks activities, and she has been hospice volunteer each year she has been at Alma College.”

For Fall Festival, Harm has recruited students and organized events for Halloween-themed activities for local children. For Relay for Life, she was a key player in the organization of the annual campus event the benefits the American Cancer Society. In addition, she develops relationships with children at the monthly Kids’ Night Out events at the local high school.

Harm, who is majoring in biology with a minor in integrated psychology and health science, also was a recipient of a Posey Global Fellowship award. She traveled to Sierra Leone to observe surgeries and deliveries and assist in the outpatient department of a local hospital.

Katherine Vaillancourt Katherine VaillancourtKatherine Vaillancourt

Vaillancourt, a senior from Hillsdale, has assumed many campus leadership roles. She has served two years as co-chair of Alternative Breaks and four years on the Service Learning Team. In the community, she is a member of the Gratiot Family Practice Patient Advisory Board and Pine River Community Action Group/Public Health Task Force.

“With an interest in medicine and public health, Katherine believes that health care and social justice are inseparable,” says Ritz. “She has taken on many projects during her four years at Alma College that have confirmed this for her. She has been a positive role model, always encouraging her Alma College peers to follow their passion.”

Additional health-focused volunteer work includes certifications in Red Cross CPR, lifeguarding, neonatal resuscitation through the American Academy of Pediatrics, and being a trained birthing assistant for home births. She also assisted with the “PBB Registry” project in cooperation with Emory University Rollins School of Public Health Research.

Vaillancourt, who is majoring in history with plans to attend medical school, has taken her passion for service internationally. She has spent summers and portions of academic terms in India, Brazil and Malawi, which have allowed her to coach Model UN teams, teach in classrooms and volunteer in a maternity hospital and women’s health clinics.

Michigan Campus Compact is a coalition of college and university presidents who are committed to fulfilling the public purpose of higher education. For more information, please visit

Story published on April 05, 2016