Black Hills State University President Kay Schallenkamp (left), Alumni Association President Hugh Palmer (second from right), and Alumni Relations Director Tom Wheaton present the Spirit of BH Award to Kelly Kirk, senior history major from Beulah, N.D., at the recent Student Volunteer Awards celebration.

The Black Hills State University Alumni Association presented the Spirit of BH Award to Kelly Kirk, senior history major from Beulah, N.D., at the 16th annual Student Volunteer Award celebration.

Each year, the Alumni Association presents a BHSU student with the Spirit of BH Award. The award is given to a student who has made significant contributions that reflect positively on the University, as well as the community as a whole.

Kirk maintains a 4.0 GPA while remaining involved with various campus activities and organizations. She became a member of the Student Senate in 2004 and was elected vice president of the Student Senate in 2006. In 2007, Kirk was elected Student Senate president. Her senate responsibilities included serving on the Activity Allocation Committee, the Presidential Search Committee, and the Student Union Expansion Building Committee, as well as numerous other committees as a student representative. She also carries this responsibility to the state level as an active member of the South Dakota Student Federation, where she meets with other student leaders and Board of Regents members to help better higher education for all South Dakota residents.

In addition to Student Senate, Kirk has been involved with the Honors Program, Swarm Days Homecoming Committee, and Pangburn Hall government, and she served as a resident assistant for two years. She has also presented at many events, including the National Collegiate Honors Convention and National Constitution Day. Kirk volunteers her time to the community, helping with blood drives, highway clean-up, the American Legion Auxiliary, and the Lutheran Church.

“I can’t say enough about her drive and need to make a difference. She spends countless hours volunteering to make our campus and community a better place to learn, live, and work,” Jane Klug, director of Student Services at BHSU, said in her nomination form. “Through her insightful leadership and volunteerism, I have seen a number of changes on campus.”