Junior special and elementary education major Lindsey Pellittieri received the Governor’s Initiative for Volunteer Excellence (GIVE) Award.
“Receiving this award reinforces my attitudes and beliefs (toward) service and encourages me to continue in my efforts to serve my community,” Pellittieri said. “To me, service is more than a day of contribution for a single effort; it surely is a lifestyle. It’s about doing more, being more and giving more.”
Pellittieri received this award because of her outstanding achievements through volunteer and community service. Pellittieri volunteers with numerous organizations, including AmeriCorps and Relay For Life.
“The GIVE Award was created in order to recognize volunteers who are making significant impacts on their communities through their service. It is truly humbling to be recognized in this capacity,” Pellittieri said.
“My passion for the spirit and traditions of campus, my pursuit for academic growth and achievement and my desire to serve a humbled community are what attribute to my commitment to serve,” she said. “These factors influence my desire to leave not just Southern Miss, but any food bank, construction site, classroom, homeless shelter or village, better than I found it.”
Pellittieri has volunteered for mission projects in both the Dominican Republic and Haiti. She has also worked with children at Lillie Burney Elementary and Longleaf Elementary schools. Pellittieri is passionate about enhancing the students’ lives, which is why she decided to become an education major.
“My objective is to be a light to those adolescents, especially when mentoring and serving those in rehab facilities or juvenile centers, so that they can regonize the light and potential within themselves,” Pellittieri said.
Josh Duplantis, director for the USM Center for Community and Civic Engagement, nominated Pellittieri for the award because of all the work she has done with not only this office, but many other organizations as well.
“It is rare to find a student who is willing to work as hard as she does on service project sites as well as in the academic arena,” Duplantis said. “Lindsey is a gifted, practical self-motivated person that works extremely hard and adds resources to any organization that she joins.”
As a sophomore, Pellittieri was named to the USM Community Service Hall of Fame. At the time she was the youngest student to ever receive that recognition. As far as Pellittieri’s future was concerned, Duplantis had nothing but positive remarks.
“Clearly, Lindsey has a bright, service-oriented future ahead of her, and will become an encouraging, positive force in the classroom.”