Community Service Organizations Gain When UNH Students Give
Corporate Social Responsibility Efforts Rewarded with Fidelity Investments Community Service Awards
Contact:  Lori Wright
603-862-0574
UNH Media Relations
March 30, 2006

DURHAM, N.H. -- On some days, University of New Hampshire freshman Monica Bellevue worked with children at St. Charles Home in Rochester on their reading skills and multiplication tables. On other days, the student volunteer with the UNH Catholic Students Organization found herself trying her best to calm down upset children who were out of control, looking for a fight. No day was the same, as she simply did whatever the Sisters of Mercy needed.

“My experience with these kids and the Sisters was humbling. The Sisters dedicated their lives to helping these children. It made me wish that I could do more. I spend so much of my day doing things that won’t matter in the long run; things that don’t have a big impact on anything,” Bellevue says. “The people that work full time at the home impact kids every day. There were so many emotional problems and so many things that needed to be addressed, and the Sisters never skipped a beat. They, more than anyone, made me want to become more involved in community service in the future.”

Bellevue, of Greenland, was one of four students honored by Fidelity Investments and the UNH Whittemore School of Business and Economics with a Fidelity Investments Community Service Award today, Thursday, March 30, 2006. The four honorees are enrolled in the Whittemore School's Introduction to Business course taught by Ross Gittell, James R. Carter Professor of Management, and were required to complete a minimum of eight hours of community service as part of learning about corporate social responsibility. The awards – $1,000 grants – went to the nonprofit organizations where the winning students completed their volunteer work.

“Community service is a critical element of the academic mission of the Whittemore School. The volunteer projects that our students work on not only help to create a life-long appreciation and commitment to civic responsibility and good citizenship, but allow them to apply classroom theory to find real-world solutions,” said Steve Bolander, dean of the Whittemore School.

“At Fidelity, we are committed to good corporate citizenship,” said Fidelity Regional General Manager Alison Stebbins. “We also encourage our employees to support community activities that are of interest to them. The Fidelity Community Service Awards provide us with a unique opportunity to showcase the volunteer work of business students at UNH and highlight this value for our state’s future business leaders and our prospective employees.”

The Fidelity Literacy Award was presented to St. Charles Children’s Home and Bellevue. The award recognizes the student volunteer project or activity that promotes literacy and/or helps strengthen reading skills for a variety of age groups and populations. According to Julie Tracy, campus minister with St. Thomas More Catholic Church in Durham, Bellevue’s commitment “has inspired our returning and older student volunteers.”

The Fidelity Financial Education Award was presented to the Nashua CARE Center and student Dan Ricci of Brookline, who assisted with the organization’s Penny Picking fundraising effort. The award recognizes the student volunteer project or activity that helps to promote personal financial education and further individual understanding of personal finance concepts, including budgeting and savings, avoiding credit and investment risks, philanthropic investment strategies, understanding different economic models, etc.

“It was awkward talking to a bunch of strangers and asking for spare change. However, when I saw the children and their mothers who I was doing this for, it seemed worth it. This whole experience was meaningful to me because I realized how lucky I am and how it is important to give back to those who are less fortunate,” Ricci said.

The Fidelity Innovation and Technology Award went to the Strafford School and student volunteer Katilyn Coffee of Nashua. The award recognizes a student volunteer project or activity that helps a nonprofit organization use technology to initiate changes in its operations and service delivery channels to expand or improve service.

At the Strafford School, Coffee helped a speech pathologist with a new student assessment and testing evaluation program that helps identify students with learning disabilities. She designed student worksheets and organized testing results that chart student growth from year to year. “Corporate social responsibility is defined as a business obligation to bring positive impacts and reduce its negative impacts on society. My requirement to do community service for business class has helped to better prepare me for the duties that I will need to fulfill when I am in the working world and possibly working at a corporate company,” Coffee said.

The Fidelity Community Investor Award was presented to Mill Pond Recreation Center and student Christian Kramar of Salem. The award recognizes the student volunteer project or activity that provides the greatest benefit to families and individual residents of the Town of Durham. Kramar volunteered at the center’s first Annual Halloween Family Festival, a free event that attracted more than 150 families with a goal of strengthening the connection between the community and the center.

According to Katie Muth, director of operations at the Mill Pond Center for the Arts, the event would not have been possible without the help of Kramar and his classmates. “The university has much to be proud of in their students. We look forward to working with UNH students in the future,” Muth said.

Fidelity Investments is one of the world's largest providers of financial services, with custodied assets of $2.4 trillion, including managed assets of more than $1.2 trillion as of Dec. 31, 2005. Fidelity offers investment management, retirement planning, brokerage, and human resources and benefits outsourcing services to more than 21 million individuals and institutions as well as through 5,500 financial intermediary firms. The firm is the largest mutual fund company in the United States, the No. 1 provider of workplace retirement savings plans, one of the largest mutual fund supermarkets and a leading online brokerage firm. For more information about Fidelity Investments, visit www.fidelity.com.