Suffolk junior Shari Kurtzman, was named a finalist in the Spirit of Service Award and will be commended for demonstrating commitment to her community through Jumpstart, a national early-education organization.

Kurtzman is one of 10 national finalists for this prestigious award, which was developed as part of American Eagle Outfitters national partnership with Jumpstart. It recognizes the outstanding leadership demonstrated by college students serving as Jumpstart Corps members.

She will attend an awards ceremony in Los Angeles in June hosted by Access Hollywood’s Shaun Robinson, where five winners will be announced. Winners will receive a $5,000 scholarship; the five additional finalists will receive $1,000 scholarships.

Leadership & service

Since her freshman year of college, Kurtzman has worked extensively to develop preschoolers' crucial early learning skills in the Roxbury and Dorchester neighborhoods. She also has provided leadership and guidance to fellow Corps members in their one-to-one efforts with children.

Additionally, she has helped Jumpstart research new means of reaching more preschool children by being the first Suffolk student to lead a pilot team of students serving two children one-on-one. Next year she will serve Jumpstart as a fourth-year Team Leader. She is one of 40 Suffolk University – Boston Jumpstart Corps members.

“I came to Suffolk not really knowing what I wanted from a college. Through Jumpstart I have found a passion and drive I had never known." said Kurzman. "Now I just run with it and I’m excited to see where it will lead.”

Kurtzman was selected from Jumpstart’s national network of 3,000 college students and was named a finalist following a thorough application and review process.