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Students begin 2022 summer of Living Democracy

Dioselin Cruz, Cori Akins, Brin Allen, and Ashby Henry.
From left to right: Dioselin Cruz, Cori Akins, Brin Allen, and Ashby Henry.

Four Auburn University Living Democracy students will spend ten weeks living and learning in the Alabama communities of Camden, Collinsville, Chatom, and Elba this summer.

The 2022 Living Democracy students are Cori Akins, Brin Allen, Dioselin Cruz and Ashby Henry. The students will work closely with community partners and local citizens to discover what it means to live democracy.

Akins, a law and justice major from Huntsville, Alabama, will spend her summer in Chatom working with community partner Jessica Ross, director of the Washington County Library. Akins said, “Living Democracy is about empowering others by connecting with your community. I hope to learn how to better serve and advocate for others.”

Allen, a sophomore history and psychology major from Spanish Fort, Alabama, will spend her summer in the northeast Alabama community of Collinsville, a Living Democracy community since 2012. She will be working closely with Jennifer Wilkins, director of the Collinsville Public Library.

Allen said, “I hope to improve my understanding of communities and develop my skills in developing projects. Living Democracy is an opportunity for college students to see the intersection of community and civic engagement in real situations.”

Cruz, a history major from Dothan, Alabama, will spend 10 weeks working primarily with the nonprofit organization Restoration 154. The sophomore said, “I hope to learn unique lessons from Elba.”

Henry, from Hope Hull, Alabama, is a senior political science and history major who will be working in Camden. Her community partners are Sulynn Creswell, executive director, and Kristin Law, arts programs and marketing director, at the Black Belt Treasures Cultural Arts Center in Camden.

Henry said, “I hope to make strong connections in the Camden community and get to know the town on a deep level. I am excited to meet new people, forge new relationships and get to know the ins and outs of such a special place.”

Living Democracy is a program of the Caroline Marshall Draughon Center for the Arts & Humanities in the College of Liberal Arts at Auburn University. Students also serve as Jean O'Connor-Snyder Interns with the David Mathews Center for Civic Life.

Tags: Community and Outreach Center for the Arts and Humanities

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