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Volunteer of the Month

Nominate a Student or Graduate for Volunteer of the Month

Nominate a UMGC student or graduate today to be the next Volunteer of the Month. This recognition highlights outstanding student and alumni volunteers who serve their communities. Each month, one volunteer will be honored.

UMGC faculty, staff, alumni, and students are encouraged to submit nominations of outstanding volunteers who show a high level of commitment to helping others. This commitment can be demonstrated in a variety of ways, including consistent participation, a willingness to give extra effort, and going beyond the duties of their role.

Important Information

January 2023: Cliff Timpson ’18 & ’20

Cliff TimpsonClifford “Cliff” Timpson recently volunteered at UMGC’s Winter Grad Walk. He spent two days greeting graduates and their families; celebrating the class of 2022; and sharing information about the UMGC Alumni Association, its benefits, and its resources.

“This was the first time I was able to be on campus and see an event dedicated to graduation on this level,” Timpson said. “It was a unique and personal experience for thousands of grads. I was able to witness an engagement on stage, see a mother and her baby with matching caps and gowns, and meet staff members I only communicated with virtually.”

The time and effort Timpson dedicated to Winter Grad Walk exceeded the expectations of his role and were surpassed only by the joy and pride he displayed for each graduate he met. His enthusiasm and energy were contagious.

December 2022: Kai Corkery, current student

Brandon SutanKai Corkery, an undergraduate student pursing a Bachelor of Science in Management Studies, gives back to his community by volunteering at the New York Blood Center. Corkery helps donors after they have their blood drawn, encouraging them to stay for a 15-minute observation period, offering snacks and beverages, and requesting additional assistance when someone feels unwell. He has been volunteering at the blood center an average of four times a month since June 2022. He is also planning a blood drive at his church.

Corkery believes that volunteering is an important part of gaining a clear view of our community. He said, “I volunteer to avoid the pattern of absorbing headlines and believing they describe our world. We must engage in our communities and change our perspectives. Then we can perform actions that benefit others in tangible ways.” 

November 2022: Brandon Sutan, current student

Brandon SutanBrandon Sutan is an avid volunteer in his community at Fort Carson, where he donates his time to several organizations. He is a youth mentor through the Travis Manion Foundation, developing future leaders by providing guidance and teaching life skills. He also volunteers with the Fort Carson United Service Organization (USO), where he opens/closes the facility, makes sure it stays clean, and serves food to other active-duty servicemembers. As an ambassador for Mission 22, a program that supports veterans and their families, Sutan runs information booths and coordinates with state and regional leaders in planning and executing events. Through the Fort Carson Army Volunteer Corps, he helped set up and direct the first-ever Fort Carson Pinewood Derby. Sutan hopes that other soldiers will see him volunteering and follow his lead.

His service also extends beyond his local community. Sutan is an active member of the CatchaFire website community, which matches skilled volunteers to nonprofits to help them increase their capacity and achieve their missions. His work at nonprofits, where he taught others ways to use funding more effectively, saved those organizations more than $15,000.

Sutan, who is pursuing his associate degree at UMGC, believes that “any positive impact you have on someone’s life can ultimately change their future.” 

October 2022: Aaliyah El-Amin ’14

Aaliyah El-Amin is a proud, energetic, and passionate member of the UMGC military advising team. She started her career working as an Education Services Specialist with the U.S. Army. After almost four years, she made the decision to move to UMGC in 2012. Not only is she an exemplary employee, she is also an incredibly involved alumni volunteer.

After coming to UMGC, El-Amin earned her Human Resource Management certificate in 2014. Over the course of the past several years, she has been an avid supporter of alumni programming through the Alumni Relations team. She has volunteered for many in-person events put on by Alumni Relations and by Career Services. Most recently she volunteered at the in-person 2022 Maryland Homecoming in Adelphi, Maryland.

El-Amin has done amazing work serving UMGC’s working adult learners. This year—2022—marks her tenth year with the university. We couldn’t be happier and more excited to have her as a colleague and active member of the UMGC alumni community.

September 2022: Ebony McArthur ’18 & ’20, current student

Ebony McArthur

When the opportunity arose, Ebony McArthur chose to run for the Student Advisory Council (STAC), knowing that her unique perspective as a student who participated in multiple degree programs at UMGC would be valuable in a role that represented the student community. McArthur began her studies at UMGC in 2016 and has since earned a Bachelor of Science in Finance and an MBA. She began her service as a graduate representative on STAC in January 2021 when she entered the doctoral program in business administration.

In addition to serving on STAC, McArthur has also volunteered for various student panels, an experience that has enabled her to share the student experience directly with UMGC leadership. She has also been a member of the University System of Maryland Student Council since September 2021.

“Volunteering is extremely important to me because it gives me a sense of community and the ability to work with others,” shares McArthur. “It means sacrificing your time and sharing your knowledge to aid others, which is what I love to do. I’ve always loved to learn, and I’ve always loved teaching and sharing my experiences.”

McArthur is owner of McArthur Realty Group and a financial literacy coach.

August 2022: Marco Avecilla ’22

Marco AvecillaMarco Avecilla recalls how his father told him about almost becoming a priest when he was younger. In the end, his father followed his heart. “It is about choices and whatever that choice is, it must come from your inner soul,” recalls Avecilla. “I volunteer because of his principles as a servant leader.” At UMGC, Avecilla volunteers through his role on the Student Advisory Council, first as the undergraduate European division representative and then as an undergraduate stateside representative. 

Avecilla has served on the council since summer 2020. Often staying up past midnight to attend meetings in Europe, he provided valuable feedback, representing military students. In 2021, Avecilla became the secretary for the council, a position he held until June 2022. Avecilla completed his Bachelor of Science in Accounting this month. 

While serving in the U.S. Air Force, Avecilla was awarded Senior Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year, Air Force Meritorious Service medals, Air Force Commendation medals, Air Force Achievement medals, and NATO medals. 

“I volunteer because it is the right thing to do. Giving back to the community gives me a sense of humility and that there’s hope for humanity,” says Avecilla. “Just like my father left me with kindness and the legacy that I should be a model for others to follow.”

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