Brown University News Bureau

The Brown University News Bureau

1996-1997 index

Distributed September 20, 1996
Contact: Tracie Sweeney

Award is named for Journal-Bulletin columnist

Cranston woman wins first Brian Dickinson Public Service Award

Lucia Trimbur, a senior from Cranston, R.I., has received the University's first Brian Dickinson Award in recognition of her extraordinary commitment to community service. Trimbur's service projects while at Brown include teaching English as a second language in South Providence, coaching youngsters on an inner-city track team, and writing a policy brief for legislators on hunger-related issues.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Lucia Trimbur, a Brown University senior from Cranston, R.I., has been named the first recipient of the University's Brian Dickinson Public Service Award. The Dickinson Award recognizes a Brown undergraduate who has demonstrated extraordinary commitment to community service.

The announcement was one of the highlights of Brown Celebrates Providence Day, Sept. 17, at which the University announced the winner of the fellowship and unveiled its new Community Partnership Directory, a listing of more than 240 University programs and offerings that benefit the city and state.

Trimbur's award is named for Brian Dickinson, a Providence Journal editorial writer who has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, or Lou Gehrig's Disease), yet continues to contribute to the editorial page. As a Brown alumnus (Master of Arts, 1972), Dickinson frequently draws upon the expertise of the Brown faculty, particularly in public affairs and foreign policy. His work has attracted a loyal following both in Providence and nationally through syndication. (Brown also offers a fellowship in Dickinson's name. The Dickinson Fellow, a working journalist, is able to spend a semester on the Brown campus, studying any area of personal or professional interest.)

Trimbur said she was honored to receive the fellowship. "Brian Dickinson's courage is an inspiration," she said. "I hope that I've done a service to the Brown community and Providence."

Trimbur and other Brown students volunteer more than 75,000 hours of community service each year. She teaches English as a second language in South Providence, volunteers as a coach with the Providence Cobras track team (as a member of Brown's own women's track team, Trimbur holds a school record in the 4-by-800-meter relay), and has prepared a policy brief for legislators on issues surrounding hunger.

Community service presents opportunities to influence a Brown student's research, course selection and career, and Trimbur is no exception. An academic internship taken through the University's Feinstein World Hunger Program, along with witnessing how hunger affects many of the students in her ESL classes, led Trimbur to conduct research on domestic hunger issues and write the policy brief she distributed to legislators. In fact, when Trimbur graduates from Brown next May, she will receive her degree in human ecology, with an emphasis on biological, cultural and historical perspectives on hunger. Trimbur's senior thesis will explore practical solutions to obstacles that exist in distributing food to the hungry.