Kristin Prinn created LUCY Outreach, a nonprofit youth development center for at-risk teens in Camden, NJ, when she was just 25 years old. On May 13, Neumann will recognize her community service with an honorary degree.
The mission of LUCY (Lifting Up Camden's Youth) is to empower the city's youngsters to form healthy relationships, make good choices, and develop into compassionate and socially responsible adults who make a positive difference in their community.
LUCY's kids, about 500 annually, can participate in a variety of programs: the LUCY Littles cohort (ages 7-11), the Afterschool Program (10-16), the College and Career Academy (12-19), the Summer Program (7-19), and the Haven LGBTQ+ Support Group (12-19).
Ninety-four percent of LUCY participants live at or below the poverty line, and 74 percent are from immigrant families.
After earning a bachelor's degree at Saint Joseph's University, where she studied sociology and criminal justice, Prinn obtained her master's degree in social work from New Mexico State University. During her graduate studies, she worked with youngsters in gangs and immigrant families and became fluent in Spanish. She returned to the Philadelphia area and established LUCY in 2007.
Sophia Parrish, the valedictorian of the class of 2023, will also speak at graduation. Parrish is a Pre-Physical Therapy major (with minors in Strength and Conditioning and Spanish) from Yardley, Pennsylvania. According to Hubert Lee, the Health Sciences program director, she is the first student in the 20-year history of the department to earn a perfect GPA.
She is a presidential ambassador and has been a member of the SGA, wellness educator, peer tutor, and president of the Honors Association. She served for a year as captain of the cross country and track and field teams and was instrumental in creating the plan for a fall 2023 wellness support group for injured athletes.
In the week before Prinn and Parrish address the graduates, campus will be buzzing with activity:
- President’s Reception and Champagne Toast (invitation only) – Wednesday, May 10, at 5 p.m. in the Bayada Atrium
- Nursing Pinning Ceremony – Thursday, May 11, at 1 p.m. in the Mirenda Center
- Multicultural Stole Ceremony – Thursday, May 11, at 4:30 p.m. in the Meagher Theatre
- Baccalaureate Mass – Friday, May 12, at 4 p.m. in Our Lady of Angels Chapel
- Academic Convocation – Friday, May 12, at 7 p.m. in the Mirenda Center
Commencement Exercises are set for Saturday, May 13, at 10 a.m. for graduate and ACE students and at 1 p.m. for undergraduates.