Heroes include a nursing student volunteering on the front lines in New York and another helping the homeless community
TAMPA, Fla. (May 13, 2020) – The University of South Florida launched a new initiative today to recognize students, faculty, staff and others within the USF community who have made significant contributions during the COVID-19 pandemic. USF President Steven Currall initiated this campaign, named USF Heroes, after observing many positive efforts on the Tampa, St. Petersburg and Sarasota-Manatee campuses and around the Tampa Bay region from members of the USF community.
“During the COVID-19 challenge, it’s important for the University of South Florida to maintain a strong sense of community, even if we’re physically distancing from each other,” Currall said. “A countless number of our students, faculty, staff and alumni have stepped up to help in many different ways during these unprecedented times and we want to show our appreciation.”
Approximately a dozen heroes have been chosen for this campaign so far, including:
Joshua Mizels – Morsani College of Medicine
Third-year medical student, Joshua Mizels, and his Tampa Bay Street Medicine faculty advisors established the Coco Clinic, an interdisciplinary student-run telehealth clinic that monitors COVID-19 positive patients who are self-isolating. The Coco Clinic is a daily follow-up phone call to help assess patient vitals, mental state and other needs.
Samantha Motis – College of Nursing
Samantha Motis, a nursing anesthesia student, volunteered to assist medical professionals in New York City, the hot zone of the pandemic. She worked 12-hour shifts for an entire month, treating coronavirus patients. Samantha has been a registered nurse since 2015.
Amanda Sharp – College of Behavioral and Community Sciences
PhD candidate Amanda Sharp has been leading outreach efforts in downtown Tampa to those who need assistance with clothing, food and personal hygiene. She’s gathered donations to assemble kindness bags filled with snack items, toothbrushes, socks and other hygiene products and has delivered them to the homeless community. This population has been greatly impacted by COVID-19 since many shelters, kitchens and food pantries are functioning at a lower capacity. This effort is part of Sharp’s “Human Kindness for Homelessness” initiative launched in December 2019.
The heroes will be recognized on USF’s website and across various university social media platforms. A full description and image of each hero can be found here.
About the University of South Florida
The University of South Florida is a high-impact global research university dedicated to student success. Over the past 10 years, no other public university in the country has risen faster in U.S. News and World Report’s national university rankings than USF. Serving more than 50,000 students on campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Sarasota-Manatee, USF is designated as a Preeminent State Research University by the Florida Board of Governors, placing it in the most elite category among the state’s 12 public universities. USF has earned widespread national recognition for its success graduating under-represented minority and limited-income students at rates equal to or higher than white and higher income students. USF is a member of the American Athletic Conference. Learn more at www.usf.edu.