University of Richmond junior Lina Tori Jan of Kabul, Afghanistan, has been announced as a 2019 Newman Civic Fellow by Campus Compact, a national coalition of more than 1,000 colleges and universities. She is only the second UR student to receive this honor.

The Newman Civic Fellowship is a one-year experience emphasizing personal, professional, and civic growth for students who have demonstrated a capacity for leadership and an investment in solving public problems.

“My first exposure to the root causes of social issues was in Afghanistan, where I grew up in the midst of war,”  said Tori Jan. “The Taliban stripped many people of their rights to participate in society — they shut down schools, burnt books, falsely accused and imprisoned individuals, and prohibited women and minority groups from public appearance. This experience ignited my desire to transcend social boundaries and fight for my right to education while advocating for the rights of others through community service.”

Tori Jan is a leadership studies and political science double major and a Bonner Scholar. In her first year at UR, she began volunteering with the International Rescue Committee, supporting refugees from across the globe. Seeking deeper knowledge about and connection to state government and policy, Jan began volunteering with the Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth last fall. As an intern, she supports the Governor's Restoration of Rights program, helping to restore civil rights to individuals who are released from incarceration. 

“Lina Tori Jan has become a student leader and visionary at the University of Richmond,” said University of Richmond President Ronald A. Crutcher in her application. “She is committed to addressing issues of inequality and to advocating tirelessly for the rights of others.”

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