Comm Student Monica McShaffrey Nominated for Humanitarian of the Year Award

For most students, the struggle of balancing class, work, and social life seems like a never-ending cycle. Add time spent participating in clubs and organizations, doing homework, and learning how to be young adults, some would question how it all fits in a 24-hour day. As part of FSU’s annual President’s Humanitarian of the Year program, President Thrasher recognized 14 undergraduate student nominees who go above and beyond to fit the most service they can into their already busy schedules. At the Humanitarian of the Year Luncheon on March 26, each nominee got to speak about their service experiences.

Humanitarian Luncheon

Clocking in at 962 hours of community service during her college career, Monica McShaffrey was chosen as the CCI nominee for the Humanitarian of the Year award. She is a senior studying Public Relations who has been a part of Dance Marathon at FSU, The Moore Agency, and the Alpha Sigma Chapter of Delta Zeta Sorority. McShaffrey is completely humbled by the nomination. “The recognition for my service work showcases that all acts of service are important and significant. This is the achievement I am proudest of from my four years here,” she says.

Her service projects include the following:

Fundraiser and Internal Team Member for Dance Marathon at FSU

  • Worked as a Marathon Events Captain helping organize, plan, and set-up the entertainment at Dance Marathon 2017.
  • Contributed $1000 to the $1.8 million fundraising total for the school in 2017.
  • General dancer who contributed over $500 to the overall funds raised for the 2016 marathon.

90 hours

Mentor to young women in the FSU Greek Life community

  • Mentored and educated women through the leadership positions held throughout the years.
  • Served as Panhellenic Delegate and Vice President of New Member Education on Delta Zeta executive board.
  • Lectured on women empowerment, lobbied for better bylaws that govern the Panhellenic Association, mentored new members to give them the right tools to be a successful college students and powerful women outside of the classroom, and educated young women on the importance of mental and physical health.

110 hours

Internship at The Moore Agency

  • Worked on various advocacy client projects. McShaffrey’s time was invested heavily into the content creation, strategy development, and implementation of the Florida Constitutional Amendment 10 campaign. There was a heavy focus on community outreach efforts to educate Floridians about the amendment. With its successful ratification in the 2018 election, Amendment 10 promises four things to all Floridians—it protects everyone’s right to vote for all Constitutional officers in their county, protects veterans by safeguarding the Department of Veterans Affairs, protects families by creating the Office of Domestic Security and Counterterrorism, and protects tax dollars by streamlining when Florida session begins in even-numbered years.
  • Other clients include the Florida Sheriff’s Association, ABLE United, the Florida Prepaid College Foundation, Feeding Florida, Florida Healthy Kids, and the Consortium of Florida Education Foundations. These clients relied heavily on securing media coverage to raise awareness about the organizations.

560 hours

Event Participant for Kidz First Fund fundraising efforts

  • Participated as a team member in the 2015 and 2016 Cheers for Children competition benefitting Kidz First Fund in 2015 and 2016.

40 hours


President Thrasher with the 2019 Humanitarian of the Year nominees. (From left to right) First row: Essence Duncan, Jennifer Magi, Melissa Carcamo, Emily Botta. Second row: Kathryn Casello, President John Thrasher, Sarah Grice, Rachel Castelli. Third row: Cara Steinberg, Madelene Wishart, Savannah Calleson, Angela Byrne, Monica McShaffrey. (FSU Photography Services)


Volunteer for the FSU Speech and Hearing Clinic

  • Each semester the Alpha Sigma Chapter of Delta Zeta dedicates an evening of service to the FSU Speech and Hearing Clinic by hosting an Easter Egg Hunt or Trick-or-Treat event for the children who receive services from the clinic. They host one of the monthly meetings for the parents of these children. The purpose of this is to spend time with the kids to help them feel as normal as possible, even though many of them cannot hear or communicate like normal kids.

7 hours

Volunteer for The Big Event

  • Dedicated a day of service to the Tallahassee Community in the Frenchtown area to revive an abandoned house to be turned into a local business.

6 hours

Volunteer for American Red Cross Hurricane Relief Efforts

  • Volunteered to put together shelter packets for the internal teams at American Red Cross Hurricane Irma relief shelters. These were instrumental in knowing what supplies each shelter had, knowing who was at the shelter, and organizing staff to run the shelters efficiently.

1 hour

Professor-guided research

  • Worked alongside Dr. Merle, Ph.D. candidate Elizabeth Ray, and various graduate students to determine if wearing glasses makes a person seem more credible. The results of this research will be instrumental for the communication field message crafting.
  • Conducted research pro bono for Florida Prepaid to determine how to best market college savings plans to senior citizens. This research helped guide campaign-strategies implemented by the Florida Prepaid team to allow more Florida children to go to college. Each child, the state of Florida, and the universities these children will attend will all benefit from the promise of education. The money invested today will be recycled into the Florida economy if the children stay in Florida for their careers.

100 hours

Volunteer Note-taker for the FSU Student Disability Services

  • Volunteered my time to regularly format and submit my notes for undisclosed students.

48 hours

Nominees will receive $200 donated in their name to a nonprofit agency of their choice. The student chosen as Humanitarian of the Year will receive an additional $1,000 to their donation. The award will be presented at the Leadership Awards Night at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 9.