The University of North Georgia is celebrating the accomplishments of student John Blessing after he was named a Harry S. Truman Scholar last week, the first in the school’s history.
And UNG is the only school in Georgia with a 2019 Truman Scholar winner.
“I honestly couldn’t be more grateful, not only to Truman who is giving me a tremendous opportunity, but also to my friends and professors,” Blessing, of Gainesville, said.
UNG President Bonita Jacobs revealed the news to Blessing on April 9 at the school’s Gainesville campus, noting the scholarship’s prestigious legacy.
“I was so shocked when they told me I won, I literally had to ask if I had actually won,” Blessing said.
The Truman Scholarship awards up to $30,000 for prospective graduate students working toward a career in government and public service.
In March, Blessing told The Times he will graduate in December with a bachelor’s degree in history, then add a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science with a focus in pre-law the following spring. He has maintained a 4.0 grade point average throughout his time at UNG.
Blessing plans to enroll in law school in the fall of 2020.
He thanked UNG professor Dr. Anastasia Lin, who, as the assistant dean of student research and scholarship, helps students pursue nationally competitive scholarships.
Blessing said Lin worked alongside him “for years to get to this point.”
“From here, this only further opens doors for me,” he added. “I can now look into and consider almost any graduate school in the country without fear of being able to afford it. And, thanks to (the scholarship), Harvard (University) might actually be an option and not just a fleeting thought.”