From the president

Samantha embodies what it looks like to engage in powerful community-based change. As a first-year student during COVID, Samantha designed and implemented a gratitude campaign among fellow students resulting in an outpouring of messages of appreciation and care for Dartmouth’s frontline essential workers. That summer through Dartmouth’s Center for Social Impact, Samantha interned at Project HOME, a Philadelphia nonprofit, where she diligently worked to alleviate the underlying causes of poverty by drafting strategic reports and policy memos advocating for increased participation by all citizens in the affordable housing process. An active member in the Dartmouth First Generation Office, Samantha has risen to a leadership role as the Student Director of Communication, Events, Programming and Alumni Relations and in her sorority, she is similarly at the helm as the Director of Philanthropy and Community Service. Samantha is just as transcendent academically double majoring in Neuroscience and Religion and having been recognized with the Katherine Booth Brock Prize as the singular woman in her class year who most embodied service to community and for welfare of others. Samantha is a trailblazer who has leveraged her academic prowess and her community-centered heart to enact genuine social change in her community and beyond.

Philip Hanlon


Dartmouth College


Personal Statement

I believe strongly in the power of community. Because of this, my approach to social impact is firmly rooted in grassroots efforts to bring about positive change. My mission is to serve my community, day in and day out, and inspire others to do the same. I have organized card making events for residents of a local nursing home, spearheaded a gratitude campaign for Dartmouth’s essential workers, dedicated Saturday mornings to preventing local food waste and fighting hunger, translated a local nonprofit’s resources to Spanish, taught ESL lessons, mentored elementary-aged students, and served in countless other community-based roles. Community-based solutions are effective because people within a community know what other community members truly need. Community members know firsthand the nuances of a given problem, which means that community-based initiatives can address issues of inequality and inequity that may not be visible from the outside. Furthermore, focusing on making one’s community a better place – rather than the entire world – is manageable, which allows me to inspire others to take action and remain involved in social impact work. It takes a village to change the world, and I am dedicated to inspiring grassroots change – one community at a time.

Samantha Palermo

Neuroscience and Religion

Dartmouth College