Andrea Haddox's values, vision and personal mission make her an excellent candidate to receive the Newman Civic Fellow award. Andrea is passionate about the social issue of food deserts in the Tulsa community, and she is committed to finding solutions. At Tulsa Community College, she conducted research on the food deserts that exist in several large areas of Tulsa County. She successfully led a team of students to undertake research and coordinated campus-based focus groups, recruited students for each group, and assisted in analyzing data. Andrea presented her research project's outcome at TCC's Second Annual Sustainability Conference in February of this year, and posed the question of "what's next" in tackling this problem. She encouraged students at the conference to think creatively about what they could contribute individually and collectively to the cause. She has inspired other students to act as she launches a follow-up project that focuses on developing models for addressing the food deserts in Tulsa. Andrea is committed to finding solutions to complex social issues, and I commend the exemplary contributions she has and will continue to make. TCC is proud and honored to have Andrea Haddox represent the college as our 2016 Newman Civic Fellow.
As the President of the Alpha Zeta Alpha Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK), I have been able to use our Honors in Action project as a platform for addressing the issue of food deserts in Tulsa. The student advisor for PTK and I decided that our recent entry in a sustainability innovation contest would transfer well into a local campus-based project on the food desert issues that affects many students here at TCC. The methodology for the research was to conduct focus groups with our student body, compile this information for data collection, and then analyze the data. As a result of this research, we came up with many possible solutions to helping those in food deserts in the Tulsa area including mobile grocery stores, reduced cost or free farmer's markets, and community gardens. More than that, though, I feel that we inspired individuals to take action in their own communities as their unique problem-solving abilities are typically the kind of changes that will ultimately be sustainable. I have spoken at numerous events at TCC and in the community regarding this subject including a recent Sustainability Conference in February and hope to continue doing so in the future.