Fareena Bacchus is the recipient of the 2015 Elisabeth Oesterlein Award, which was presented Friday, April 24, on the occasion of Founders Day and the inauguration of Dr. D. E. Lorraine Sterritt as president of Salem Academy and College.
The Oesterlein Award is named in honor of Salem’s first teacher. Members of the Salem community nominate candidates, and each nominee competes against other outstanding seniors. Nominees are expected to have attended all four years at Salem. They are recognized for making notable contributions to the quality of campus life at Salem, for demonstrating quality leadership, and for their diligent pursuit of academic excellence.
As a member of Fremdendienerin, as an Honor Guide, and as an Orientation Leader, Bacchus has contributed greatly to Salem’s recruiting efforts by welcoming prospective students, new students, and their families to the campus with her bright personality, her kind demeanor, and her knowledge about Salem College.
She has served in multiple clubs and organizations. As an officer in the Student Government Association, she has demonstrated strong leadership and has garnered the respect of her peers and that of the faculty and staff. Her courage and pioneering spirit have enhanced the campus community’s understanding of diverse faith backgrounds, and she has played a major role in the growth of the Muslim Student Association on the campus.
During all four years at Salem, Bacchus has invested in her professional development by serving on the committee for Salem’s annual Women’s Conference, and by completing a wide range of internships, including positions with Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, Novant Health, Vela Strategic Marketing and Public Relations, Crosby Scholars, and in offices on Salem’s campus. After graduation on May 23, she is seeking to secure a position in communications and marketing.
As the president of the Class of 2015, she has led more than 50 percent of the senior class to participate in Salem’s annual giving program. In selecting her as the 2015 recipient, the selection committee noted, “Salem has been forever transformed by her presence and by her involvement on our campus.”