Junior selected as finalist for prestigious Truman Scholarship

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Ivy Clarke
Ivy Clarke

MACON – Mercer University junior Ivy Clarke was recently selected as a finalist for the Truman Scholarship, the premier graduate fellowship in the United States for those pursuing careers as public service leaders.

Clarke, an English literature and creative writing double-major from San Antonio, Texas, was named a Newman Civic Fellow earlier this semester and is also a Stamps Scholar at Mercer.

The Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation this year received 845 applications – a record number of applicants – representing 328 colleges and universities. A total of 193 finalists were selected based on their records of leadership, public service and academic achievement and were interviewed by the foundation’s Regional Review Panels from March 1-April 5. Clarke was one of 10 finalists from her home state of Texas.

“The Truman Scholarship is the nation’s most prestigious award for students interested in careers in public service. Ivy’s recognition as a finalist reflects her commitment to using literature to help people share their voices. She has been an exceptionally involved student at Mercer, and we look forward to seeing her change the world,” said Dr. David A. Davis, director of fellowships and scholarships and associate professor of English at Mercer.

Clarke plans to apply for a Fulbright Study/Research Award and attend a graduate program in creative writing. Ultimately, she aspires to work for a nonprofit publishing press that contributes to social justice solutions.

“To be selected as a Truman finalist is an incredible honor,” said Clarke. “Through this process, I have had the opportunity to connect with like-minded Truman Scholars and other finalists who share my passion for positive change but approach it from unique perspectives, which I have appreciated learning about. I’ve also learned so much about myself and who I want to become as I ascertain my ambition to use literature as a tool for empowerment.”

Clarke serves as a writing tutor and Arts and Culture section editor of Mercer’s student newspaper, The Cluster. She has also held editorial internships with Macon Magazine and Mercer University Press.

The Truman Scholarship includes $30,000 to attend graduate school as well as a weeklong leadership training session with other winners and an internship opportunity in Washington, D.C. Only 50 to 60 undergraduates – approximately one from each state – receive the prestigious scholarship.

About the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Mercer University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences serves as the academic cornerstone of one of America’s oldest and most distinctive institutions of higher learning. The oldest and largest of Mercer’s 12 schools and colleges, it is a diverse and vibrant community, enrolling more than 1,900 students, dedicated to learning and service through the practice of intellectual curiosity, respectful dialogue and responsible citizenry. The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences offers majors in more than 30 areas of study, including more than a dozen pre-professional academic tracks, with classes taught by an outstanding faculty of scholars. In 2015, Mercer was awarded a chapter of The Phi Beta Kappa Society, the nation’s most prestigious academic honor society that recognizes exceptional achievement in the arts and sciences. For more information, visit liberalarts.mercer.edu.

Kyle Sears
Kyle is the director of media relations at Mercer. In addition to being the primary media contact for most academic and administrative units of the university, he coordinates hometown and university news releases and serves as editor of the News@Mercer e-newsletter and Reach magazine.​