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Community Engagement & Service

Eagle Endowment Council

The Eagle Endowment: Moving Ideas Into Action

Eagle with endowment wording on it

The Eagle Endowment for Public and Community Service is a unique, student-led effort providing grants to students. The very first initiative of its kind, the endowment awards grants up to $1,000 to students and student groups demonstrating a need for the initial resources to propel an original idea that focuses on providing high quality community service in the DC area into action. We then continue working with the recipient to turn their action into service by providing education and an alumni/professionals network to help maintain success in their venture.

Council members will assist with promoting each grant cycle, reviewing and interviewing applicants, fundraising to maintain funds granted out and assist with event planning activities. Undergraduate, graduate, and Washington College of Law students are all encouraged to apply for a position. A Council with a diverse background will only strengthen the mission of the Eagle Endowment in providing grants and educating the University community through service.


Current Council Members:

Saagar Gupta (Coordinator)

Saagar Gupta is a junior majoring in CLEG, (Communications, Legal Institutions, Economics, and Government). He is persuing certificates in Community-Based Research as well as Applied Ethics and Professional Responsibility. He is a Community-Based Research Scholar and works as a Research Assistant in the School of Public Affairs.

Elizabeth Mariapen

Elizabeth Mariapen is a first-year graduate student of Public Administration in the School of Public Affairs at American University. Her core areas of interest include state and local government and public finance management. Before joining the council, she was a school administrator and served as an AmeriCorps member for City Year Chicago. She holds a B.A. from Union College. She is currently the office coordinator for the Metropolitan Policy Center at American University.

Melissa Patton

Melissa is a sophomore at AU.  She lived in Montreal, Canada until she was 10, but has lived in suburban Philadelphia for the last 9 years. She is a proud Canadian/American dual citizen. She is an enthusiastic hockey fan and a mega bookworm. Melissa is passionate about community service and loves learning about different communities and individuals. She loves talking to people and learning about how different communities work and how different people live. She is involved with Women's Initiative at AU. She is excited to be on the Eagle Endowment Council and is looking forward to a great year.

Matt Pedretti

Matt Pedretti is a sophomore majoring in Public Relations/Strategic Communication with a minor in Political Science, from Yorktown Heights, NY. Matt is also pursuing a certificate in Community-Based Research. On-campus he is an ambassador for the School of Communication and a member of the AU Honors Program. Matt loves reality television more than any human probably should, and you can probably hear him talking about Survivor, The Bachelor, or the Real Housewives at any time of the day. A final fun fact about Matt is that he once made $50 to scare people at an advance showing of the Blair Witch Project remake. 

Shawn Stern

Shawn Stern is a graduate student who is studying for a Masters in Public Administration. Shawn received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Communication Arts & Sciences from Pennsylvania State University. Shawn served for two years in Teach For America as a Mississippi Corps Member; he worked as a secondary English teacher for grades 9 through 12. Shawn is currently working in education policy as an intern at the Alliance for Excellent Education, is a communications committee member for the Penn State DC Alumni Network and is on the fundraising committee for the Eagle Endowment Council. 

Mitchel Traer 

Mitchel Traer is a freshman double majoring in CLEG and Political Science. He is also a member of the School of Public Affairs Leadership Program. During the summer Mitchel works at Canobie Lake Park as a Technician helping to run the different magic shows, tribute artists, and other performances that Canobie has. He is also a member of CRU (perviously Campus Crusade for Christ) and attends Restoration Church on Sundays. He is honored to be a part of the Eagle Endowment and can’t wait to see all that it can do this year to impact the lives of students at AU and the DC community as a whole. 



Eagle Endowment Council Applications for 2016-2017 are closed

Eagle with endowment wording on it

The Eagle Endowment Council is a body made up of Undergraduate and Graduate Students who helps review grant applications and determine funding. Members receive experience in a variety of areas including Marketing, Fundraising, and Project Management. If you have questions about eligibility, email the Coordinator at, contact the office at (202) 885-7378, or visit us in MGC 273.


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