Hamline News

2017 Newman Civic Fellowship


Hamline University is honored to announce that Conner Suddick, a second year legal studies and social justice double major, was named a 2017 Newman Civic Fellow.

The Newman Civic Fellowship is presented by Campus Compact, a national coalition of 1,000 colleges and universities dedicated to advancing the public purposes of higher education. Each year, the Hamline University president handpicks an undergraduate student nominee who demonstrates Hamline’s strong commitment to community involvement and social justice.

“I couldn’t be more pleased that Conner is Hamline’s 2017 Newman Civic Fellow,” Hamline University President Fayneese Miller said. “He is the embodiment of the kind of social justice-oriented scholar that Hamline seeks and nurtures. Students like Conner are the change-makers who can transform our communities immeasurably, for all of us and for future generations.”

Suddick is devoted to actively creating social change and educating people on the importance of community empowerment. He is interested in the intersection of legal studies and social justice to create policies that support access to the legal system for marginalized individuals, specifically low-income and LGBTQ+ communities.

“I am passionate about solving the disparities for marginalized communities having a lack of access to legal services and living under discriminatory policies,” Suddick said in his personal statement submitted for the Fellowship nomination. “I am concerned about the exclusionary effect of these issues on people who are seeking solutions to social impediments like housing, family issues, and bankruptcy. I aspire to be a voice to support those who may feel powerless or silenced.”

Suddick lives his passion through community involvement across multiple organizations including the Volunteer Lawyers Network (VLN), LegalCORPS, The Arc Greater Twin Cities, and OutFront Minnesota. He also works with Hamline’s Center for Justice and Law to promote programming for students to discuss issues of social policy, law, and justice. 

“The cultivation of community-committed leaders has never been more crucial,” Campus Compact President Andrew Seligsohn said in a press release. “We rebuilt the Newman Civic Fellowship experience because our country needs more people who know how to bring communities together for positive change. We are thrilled to welcome this group of 273 exemplary students as the first cohort to participate in this new model.”

In addition to this latest achievement, Suddick is the youngest member ever elected to OutFront Minnesota's Board of Directors, a role he says affords him the opportunity to influence in the state's largest LGBTQ+ organization in addressing issues for the queer community.

“My passion for this work draws from my personal journey growing up LGBTQ+ and the roadblocks I experienced,” Conner said in his personal statement. “I have chosen to productively channel my frustration about these issues to defend the rights of others that do not have a voice.”

You can read more about the Newman Civic Fellowship on Campus Compact’s website