Penfield College Ph.D. Candidate Melissa Waller Recognized Among Atlanta’s Top Government Employees Under Age 40

Melissa Waller

ATLANTA – Mercer University student Melissa Waller, a Ph.D. candidate in Penfield College’s counselor education and supervision program, was recently recognized by Young Government Leaders – Atlanta in its second class of YoungGov40 Award winners.

The awards honor and highlight Metro Atlanta’s top government employees under age 40. Waller, an educator for the deaf/hard of hearing and homeless education site coordinator for Atlanta Public Schools, is among three-dozen honorees for 2018.

Waller was presented her award during the second annual YoungGov40 Awards Ceremony held in May at Atlanta City Hall during Public Service Recognition Week sponsored by Atlanta City Councilman Andre Dickens. The keynote speaker was State Rep. Debra Bazemore of House District 63.

Waller, a national certified counselor and educator for the deaf and hard of hearing, earned her Bachelor of Arts with a double major in deaf education and elementary education from Michigan State University and Master of Science in clinical mental health counseling from Mercer.

Young Government Leaders (YGL) is an 8,000-plus-member, national nonprofit organization committed to providing the authentic voice for the current generation of aspiring government leaders. YGL is actively building a community of leadership for young public servants across the country through professional development activities, networking opportunities, social events, seminars, fellowships and scholarships.

The mission of Young Government Leaders – Atlanta, which includes more than 1,000 public servants at the federal, state and local levels, is to educate, inspire and transform future government leaders in the Atlanta area.

About Penfield College

Mercer University’s Penfield College, established as the College of Continuing and Professional Studies in 2003, is committed to serving post-traditional learners. Undergraduate, graduate and certificate programs are offered to adult learners seeking professional advancement into leadership roles in and beyond their communities. Penfield’s programs provide students with distinctive, multidisciplinary experiences that integrate theory and practice. In addition to providing general education and elective courses for various colleges and schools at Mercer, Penfield offers degree programs in areas including technology, public safety, public and human services, leadership and administration, healthcare and liberal arts. Programs are offered on Mercer’s campuses in Atlanta and Macon, as well as Regional Academic Centers in Douglas County and Henry County, and online. To learn more, visit