FARMINGTON — University of Maine at Farmington student Kelley Damboise was recently honored as an Outstanding Future Professional by the Eastern District Association of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. She is one of only two Maine college students chosen in 2009 for this distinction.

A UMF senior from Caribou, Damboise is majoring in community health education with a concentration in school health. She was recognized for the award for her academic achievement, campus and community involvement, leadership qualities and professional standing. As part of her award, she will receive an all-expense-paid trip to attend AAHPERD’s annual professional conference held in Rye, N.Y., this February.

“Kelley is a standout student who leads with a quiet manner,” said Stephanie Swan, UMF lecturer in community health education. “We’ve worked closely together since her first community health class at UMF and she is a person who is constantly challenging herself and embracing learning. Her commitment to her profession is a model for anyone interested in pursuing a career in the community health field.”

 While completing her degree, Damboise has also invested her time at Maine youth recreation centers, helping young people live a healthy life. Locally, she served as the supervisor of an after-school program for fifth- through eighth-grade students at the Farmington Recreation Department.

She facilitated a summer science and nature discovery camp for students from preschool age to fifth grade at the YMCA in Bar Harbor. Additionally, she helped direct, instruct and train youth sports teams at the Caribou Recreation Center.

“Living a healthy life factors into everything you do,” said Damboise. “I was raised with a great sense of how to make healthy choices for myself. Now, UMF has given me the skills and knowledge I need to help make that a reality for others.”

 During her time at UMF, Damboise has participated in a number of campus organizations. She currently serves as the vice president of the UMF Health Club, of which she has been a longtime member. She is a member of the UMF Ultimate Disc Club and has actively participated with the Student Admissions Club, working as a campus tour guide.

Damboise was also a member of the Maine Education Association’s Student Program that offers students the opportunity to prepare for a career in teaching with professional development, community outreach and networking offerings.

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