The University of Memphis is thrilled to announce that two honors students, juniors Melissa Byrd and Danielle Davis, are finalists for the prestigious Truman Scholarship, a national fellowship that awards up to $30,000 for graduate study. The Truman Scholarship will be awarded to 60 applicants from a pool of 200 finalists in April, after all finalists have been interviewed by review panels.
There are over 600 applications for this award each year and the finalists are chosen based on “outstanding leadership potential, exceptional academic achievement, and commitment to careers in government or elsewhere in public service.” In addition to the scholarship funding, Truman scholars receive priority admissions, supplemental financial aid, leadership training, career and graduate education advising, and special internship opportunities with the federal government.
We are proud to have our school represented by such strong candidates from diverse areas of study.
Byrd is a journalism major, concentrating on public relations, and hopes to earn a Masters of Public Administration, concentrating on public and nonprofit management policy. Her extracurricular activities complement her course of study, as she is involved with a number of organizations, including Emerging Leaders and the Student Government Association. She is the executive director of Up ‘Til Dawn, a fundraising organization for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and is a member of Tiger Elite, a highly selective recruitment and ambassador program through the Office of Admissions and Recruitment.
Davis is an Early Childhood Education major, and plans to pursue a Doctorate in Educational Administration and Policy. She is also involved with a number of community and campus organizations. She is an active volunteer at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Memphis, and is interning at the Children’s Defense Fund’s Freedom Schools. On campus, she is the Public Relations Chair for the University of Memphis Association for the Education of Young Children, and is on the advisory board for the Center of Literary Research and Practice. She hopes to combat poverty by working to change the educational opportunities for young children in Memphis by becoming a superintendent of a low-performing school.
Both Byrd and Davis are dedicated to improving their communities and we are proud to see University of Memphis students so devoted to helping others.