PPAC’s Alan Chille Establishes Student Leadership Award at RIC

The first award was given to nursing student Leeann Schmitt of North Providence. The award will be presented annually at Chille’s alma mater to students who demonstrate strong leadership qualities on campus.

Leeann Schmitt (right), recipient of the first Alan J. Chille Leadership Award at Rhode Island College,
stands with Alan Chille and Jane Williams, dean of RIC's School of Nursing, at the award presentation
on April 22 at the college.
Leeann Schmitt, 22, of North Providence, a nursing student at Rhode Island College, is the recipient of the first Alan J. Chille Leadership Excellence Award at the college. The award was presented April 22 in a ceremony at RIC’s Student Union, and will become an annual presentation.

Schmitt, a senior, was nominated by Jane Williams, dean of RIC’s School of Nursing. Schmitt is also the president of the Student Nurses Association on campus.

In Williams’ nomination letter, she described Schmitt as the person responsible for generating active student participation in the nursing program, effectively organizing numerous charity and fundraising events that benefited the community and the School of Nursing, such as donations to the Ronald McDonald House, the R.I. Food Bank, and a goodwill trip of a midwife to Haiti.

Twenty-five students were nominated for the Chille award.

Chille, the general manager of the Providence Performing Arts Center (PPAC), and 1982 graduate of RIC, created the award to honor students who exemplify the qualities of a good leader.

“Sometimes when you’re young, you don’t realize that you’re a leader,” Chille said. “The concept of acknowledging students as leaders while they are still students gives them confidence to continue doing worthwhile things for the college and after they leave. It is good for the students and the college.”

Award nominees must be in good academic standing at the college and must demonstrate that they’ve made a positive impact on the campus through academic internships, campus employment, involvement with student programs and organizations, and successful collaborations with other students.

While at RIC, Chille managed the then operational campus pub, was employed at the campus store, and was a leader of student programming. He was also active in the college’s theatre productions and end-of-year activities.

“I was the typical commuter student, I drove to campus and drove home. Then I got a job in the Student Union and things changed. The college did great things for me,” he said.
He said that many of the decisions he makes as part of his job at PPAC are based in his early decision making roles at RIC.

In addition to his mentorship of RIC student leaders, Chille also serves on the college’s Shinn Study Abroad Committee, which provides opportunities for qualified students to study in other countries, and is a member of several alumni committees, including the Baby Boomers transitional committee. In 2007, he received the School of Management Honor Roll award.

“Alan Chille is an alum who supports recognition of RIC students who are leaders-in-the-making. We are proud of his success as general manager of PPAC and appreciate his generosity in always acknowledging RIC’s role in his success,” said RIC President Nancy Carriuolo.