Bridgewater College senior Kaitlyn Painter has received the Melissa D. Jett Community Service Award. The award recognizes outstanding leadership in community service.
The award is named in memory of Melissa D. Jett, who would have graduated with the Bridgewater College class of 1999. She died Jan. 15, 1997, as the result of a traffic accident on campus. During her life, Jett was dedicated to serving others. The award is presented to a student “who has demonstrated consistent and exemplary leadership in community service while a student at Bridgewater College.”
Painter, a liberal studies major with Pre-K through sixth grade certification, is the daughter of Kevin Painter of Stanley, Va., and Angela Hilliard.
She is a member of the Philomathes Society, Bridgewater’s scholastic honor society, and Educators Rising (formerly Future Educators of Bridgewater College).
All her life Painter has had close ties with the Stanley Volunteer Fire Department. Her dad, Kevin, is a 30-year volunteer and currently serves as Captain.
Painter joined the Fire Department’s Auxiliary at the age of 15 and has served as secretary since September 2020. To raise money for the Fire Department, she has helped to host fundraisers and cater meals. During 2020, the auxiliary raised $20,000 for the Fire Department. She has also assisted with fire safety days at local schools.
For the last five years, Painter has volunteered with Vacation Bible School at Rileyville Gospel Church. She also has worked in the church’s nursery and assisted with many children’s activities. Following graduation on May 1, Painter is looking forward to getting a full-time teaching position.