Emerging Leaders in Community Engagement Award Winners

Community-Engaged Alliance presented the Emerging Leaders Award to four prominent Indiana college and university faculty members. Established in 2020, the award is designed to recognize individuals who may be early career or new to community engagement work who aspire to advance the field and shift the culture of community engagement.

Applications and nominations for the 2023 Emerging Leaders Awards are open until July 8, 2022. Faculty, staff, and students are eligible to be recognized.

Dr. Carrie Mier, Indiana University East

Mier is an assistant professor of criminal justice at Indiana University East. As an educator, Mier encourages her students to bring course materials to life through community engagement and service learning. Her ultimate goal is to get students interested, engaged, and involved in their communities and to humanize the experience of those experiencing addiction and recovery. Her community engagement work has been supported by the Reid Health Community Benefit Grant, School of Humanities and Social Sciences Strategic Investment Funding, and IU East Chancellor’s Community Engagement Course Development Grants.



Dr. Jane Siegler, Butler University

Siegler is an assistant professor at the Lacy School of Business at Butler University. She has actively engaged the business community in her academic and professional research, aiming to leverage and share the knowledge created. Her research interests include supply chain resilience, buyer and supplier relationships, business clusters, and technologies related to supply chain. Siegler has special collaboration with the automotive and logistics industry in the US Midwest. She has presented her research in dozens of conferences in different parts of the world and her research has appeared in several peer reviewed journals such as the IJPE, RAC, IJLSM, among others. Her students enjoy her classes and share they, “really learned a lot and will take that learning to the real-world.”


Melanie Swihart, Ball State University

Swihart is an assistant teaching professor of dance at Ball State University. Swihart worked with her departmental chair to plan and coordinate their faculty retreat that included guest panelists and training sessions in diversity and inclusion. Swihart serves as the advisor to the student organization, Movement Exchange, which strives to impart love and curiosity of dance in community youth through the after-school program, DANCE! Muncie After School. She is excited about the opportunity to grow arts after-school programming through the 2021 Provost's Immersive Learning Pilot Grant program, ARTS! Muncie After School. This program will integrate Theatre and Dance students in an immersive learning experience through the act of curriculum development and student teaching in Muncie Community Schools.


Dr. Scott Sterling, Indiana State University

Sterling is an associate professor of linguistics and TESL at Indiana State University. Since 2017, he has directed a collaboration with the Southern Indiana Education Center in which students at ISU visit a local migrant camp every year. These visits allow students to see the world of adult ESL education through a different lens than most have or will encounter in the future. He has also developed a summer internship where ISU students spend their evenings teaching free ESL courses to migrant workers on a farm. In 2017, through support from ISU's Center for Community Engagement, Sterling built an outdoor classroom. Interns develop a full curriculum each year based on the need of the current workers. Interns then travel to the farm and teach courses four nights a week in a field in southern Indiana. In recent years he has created a health screening and injury prevention day for migrant workers in collaboration with the College of Health and Human Services at ISU.



Published May 5, 2022