Jeffrey Sved ChE ’11 capped off his Villanova undergraduate experience with a prestigious award from the Villanova University Center for Peace and Justice. As this year’s Thomas J. Mentzer Award, Sved was recognized for his significant contributions to expand opportunities for the poor and marginalized. Members of the Center for Peace and Justice presented Sved with the award, which includes an inscribed plaque and a cash stipend, at a special recognition breakfast on Sunday, May 15.
From the moment Sved arrived on campus, he began making an impact through the Villanova Service Council. Through a variety of leadership roles, Sved coordinated Villanova Campus Ministry’s weekly service program; led weekly trips to St. Francis Inn and St. Agatha’s Soup Kitchen, both of which offer critical access to food for the hungry; and helped train the next generation of Villanova student service leaders. He also worked with groups and organizations on campus to establish donation drives or programs for sharing unused or unneeded food with these organizations. In addition, as Chair of Hunger and Homelessness Week, Sved organized the annual panel discussion on homelessness with the National Coalition Against Homelessness and coordinated the campus-wide solidarity sleep-out among students.
His service experiences also took him around the world, from Habitat for Humanity builds in South Carolina and Arkansas, to Costa Rica, where he worked with a group of 15 students to spread environmental education and awareness there.
But just because his time at Villanova has ended does not mean Sved’s service will end, too. Starting this fall, Sved will travel to Chuuk, Micronesia with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps International Program to teach at Saramen Chuuk Academy Jesuit High School and live within the community for two years.
The Thomas J. Mentzer Award is named for a Villanova graduate from 1955 who later became a faculty member within the History Department and was active in many of the social issues of the time, including work to oppose racial conflict and segregation.