Alecia Page, President, Western Carolina University Student Government Association
The Challenge: North Carolina slashed some $400 million from the state university system's budgets.
How She Tackled It: "I kept seeing Facebook updates from my friends who could no longer afford to go to school," says Page, who has a teaching fellowship. "I thought I could tell their stories." With a borrowed video camera, she filmed her peers talking candidly about the devastating impact of reduced financial aid. The project, called Cuts Hurt, landed Page in Washington, D.C., playing the videos for North Carolina's congressional delegation.
The Happy Result: Lawmakers are considering rolling back some of the reductions in aid for 2013. "This is a huge issue," Page says. "We can't deny students the prospect of better lives." —A.A.