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Bailey Morris Wins Covenant Award for Service

SIOUX FALLS – Bailey Morris, a senior from Faribault, Minn., is the recipient of the Augustana Covenant Award for Service.

The Covenant Award has become a notable and significant tradition at Augustana as it is presented five times each year; one award for each of the College’s five core values: Christian, Liberal Arts, Excellence, Community and Service.

In selecting the recipient for this year’s Covenant Award for Service, a committee of faculty and staff reviewed letters of nomination from the entire campus community. Those who submitted nominations were asked to consider how the nominee demonstrated and emulated: Genuine service that often goes unrecognized because it is done quietly and without fanfare; commitment to service that shapes his/her plans for the future, and consistent service that is demonstrated on the Augustana campus and as well as in the broader community.

One of her faculty shares, “She is one of the most gifted, exemplary students I have had the pleasure of working with.”

Morris has demonstrated leadership and service in a variety of capacities while at Augustana. She has been a New Student Experience mentor for a group of 15 freshmen for the first semester of college for two years. She has been involved in Community Service Day at Augustana all four years; she is a member of the Augustana Coalition for Social Justice and is committed to equity for people that are often marginalized by the public.

She joined Student Council for Exceptional Children her freshman year and has been the SCEC fundraising chair for three years. As chairperson she leads the Survival Kit fundraising project each semester and organizes the marketing, sales, assembly, and delivery of 200 to 300 Survival Kits per semester to Augustana students during final exam week.

A new project that she has single handedly organized is connecting a special education school in Honduras with kids with disabilities at Patrick Henry Middle School in Sioux Falls through a pen pal program.

Morris is described as having a charismatic personality and brings energy to every situation she is in. One of her faculty shares, “She is one of the most gifted, exemplary students I have had the pleasure of working with.”

She is the first program director of FRIENDSLink, a program that creates friendship for young adults with disabilities by providing various small group and one-on-one educational and recreational opportunities for adults with disabilities through a partnership with the Augustana College students. FRIENDSLink matches people with intellectual disabilities with college students and creates one-to-one friendships between them so the participants may have a positive and enriching experience when he/she attends a community activity.

Because of her passion and leadership in this project, there are more than 70 Augustana students involved in FRIENDSLink. She is now consulting with individuals in Spearfish at Black Hills State University to help them implement their own version of FRIENDSLink.

Bailey, who was elected Queen for Viking Days 2008, is a senior majoring in Special Education. She is the daughter of Renee and Ron Morris.

Also nominated were Darcy Haas, senior nursing major from Holdingford, Minn., and Jessica Maske, senior religion major from Lincoln, Neb.