Search Under Way For Indiana’s Top Youth Volunteers Of 2017


PR Newswire — September 6, 2016

INDIANAPOLIS, Sept. 6, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Today, The Prudential Spirit of
Community Awards begins its search for Indiana’s top youth volunteers of 2017.

Now through November 8, students in grades 5-12 are invited to apply for
Prudential Spirit of Community Awards if they have made meaningful contributions
to their communities through volunteer service within the past 12 months. The
application is available at and

This program year marks The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards’ 22nd year of
honoring youth volunteers. The program, sponsored by Prudential Financial in
partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals
(NASSP), was created in 1995 to recognize middle level and high school students
for helping people in need, promoting health and safety, protecting the
environment, or volunteering in other ways. The awards are presented annually on
the local, state and national level.

“After 21 years of conducting The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards, it’s
clear that young volunteers across the United States are making meaningful
contributions to their communities,” said Prudential Chairman and CEO John
Strangfeld. “By shining a spotlight on their service, we hope that more young
people will be inspired to serve their communities and make a difference to the
people around them.”

Indiana’s top youth volunteers of 2016 were Kamna Gupta, 18, of Carmel and Esha
Mishra, 14, of Schererville. Kamna, Indiana’s top high school volunteer, has
collected and distributed more than 2,500 pounds of gently used shoes to people
in third-world countries through “Soles for Souls,” the nonprofit organization
she founded in 2013 after a trip to India. Esha, Indiana’s top middle level
volunteer, organized a collection drive at her school that yielded thousands of
school supplies for poverty-stricken children in Nepal.

Applicants for 2017 awards must complete their online applications by November
8, 2016, then submit them for certification to a middle or high school
principal, Girl Scout council, county 4-H agent, American Red Cross chapter,
YMCA or HandsOn Network affiliate. Paper application forms can be requested by
calling 877-525-8491.

Participating schools and local organizations will select Local Honorees in
early November and present them with Certificates of Achievement. These Local
Honorees also will receive the President’s Volunteer Service Award from
President Barack Obama if they have contributed the minimum number of volunteer
hours to qualify (26 hours for age 10 and younger, 50 hours for ages 11-15 and
100 hours for older students). All Local Honorees are then reviewed by a
state-level judging committee, which will name the top two candidates from each
state and the District of Columbia – one high school student and one middle
level student – as State Honorees on February 7, 2017. These State Honorees will
receive $1,000 awards, engraved silver medallions, and an all-expense-paid trip
to Washington, D.C., with a parent or guardian for four days of recognition
events May 6-9, 2017. Distinguished Finalists at the state level will receive
bronze medallions, and runners-up will receive Certificates of Excellence.

In Washington, a distinguished national selection committee will name 10 of the
102 State Honorees as America’s top youth volunteers of the year. These National
Honorees will receive additional awards of $5,000, gold medallions, crystal
trophies for their nominating schools or organizations, and $5,000 grants from
The Prudential Foundation for nonprofit charitable organizations of their

“When students serve others through volunteer service, they set a compelling
example for their peers in the process,” said JoAnn Bartoletti, executive
director of NASSP. “We look forward to celebrating the initiative and compassion
of middle level and high school volunteers.”

The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards program is the United States’ largest
youth recognition program based solely on volunteer community service, and has
honored more than 115,000 young volunteers at the local, state and national
level over the past 21 years. The awards program also is conducted in Japan,
South Korea, Taiwan, Ireland, India, China and Brazil, where Prudential has
significant business operations.

The National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) is the leading
organization of and voice for middle level and high school principals, assistant
principals, and school leaders from across the United States. The association
connects and engages school leaders through advocacy, research, education, and
student programs. NASSP advocates on behalf of all school leaders to ensure the
success of each student and strengthens school leadership practices through the
design and delivery of high quality professional learning experiences.
Reflecting its long-standing commitment to student leadership development, NASSP
administers the National Honor Society, National Junior Honor Society, National
Elementary Honor Society, and National Association of Student Councils. For more
information about NASSP, located in Reston, VA, visit

Prudential Financial, Inc. (NYSE: PRU), a financial services leader, has
operations in the United States, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. Prudential’s
diverse and talented employees are committed to helping individual and
institutional customers grow and protect their wealth through a variety of
products and services, including life insurance, annuities, retirement-related
services, mutual funds and investment management. In the U.S., Prudential’s
iconic Rock symbol has stood for strength, stability, expertise and innovation
for more than a century. For more information, please visit

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SOURCE Prudential Insurance

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