Connie Buford Student Service Leader Award

The AISA Board established in January 2023 that the award shall be named and funded in memory of Connie Buford, a distinguished international education leader who served as AISA’s Executive Director from 1988 to 1997.  Her love of Africa, her enthusiasm for building community, lifting and helping others, and her passion for student service learning live on in this award.

You too, can DONATE to support AISA’s Service Awards.

This award is for a student service leader who can demonstrate a commitment to his/her/their community and to using critical thinking, empathy and principles of sustainable development to engage with a community-based issue or need.

The student(s) must be able to demonstrate:

  • personal attributes of a changemaker (which could include a deep awareness of global issues and the Sustainable Development Goals, active listening, mature awareness of self and others, and a commitment to purposeful and critical action over time)
  • an understanding of community assets and needs
  • an understanding of reciprocal community partnerships and action
  • an understanding of the principles of sustainable development
  • integration into the school’s service learning program or initiatives, and connection to a curricular area of study
  • the ability to take action sustainably and reciprocally, either face-to-face or online, to create impact and positive, purposeful change
  • a detailed rationale or plan of how prize money from this award would be used to extend sustainable action and change with this partnership/experience*
  • personal reflection of what they have learned from a community partner and how they have grown through community engagement/service


A US$ 1,500 award will be granted to a school to recognise a student or a group of students who demonstrate their service and commitment to the community. The school will allocate this funding to support the awarded project. The student will receive a plaque and letter from AISA to recognise their outstanding achievements.

Nomination Guidelines

Each AISA Full Member school is invited to nominate a student/group of students each year to be considered for this award.

  • Only one application per school per award, please select the best
  • A formal communication and plaque of recognition will be sent to the winners’ school heads and counsellors. The public announcement and award presentation will then take place at the AISA Global Issues Service Summit (AISA-GISS), a student-led learning event.

Key Nomination Dates: 

  • Opening Date: 01 August
  • Close Date: 31 October
  • Announcement: February (at AISA-GISS)
You can click the button below during the nomination period to complete the application form. Reach out to the AISA team at if you need any clarification or assistance.
See Showcased Winners
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