JOHNSON CITY—The Roan Scholars Leadership Program has selected eight high school seniors for the incoming Roan Class of 2025. Those students will join 24 returning Roan Scholars at East Tennessee State University this fall as part of the prestigious four-year scholarship program.
Members of the Roan Class of 2025 were selected from among nearly 100 nominees in 27 counties. These students have initiated projects that address pressing needs in local communities, been recognized for their academic achievement and competed at state, national, and even international levels in multiple sports. They have served as student representatives for school boards and statewide organizations, undertaken entrepreneurial endeavors, and served their communities.
Cocke County High School senior Morgan Blazer was selected as one of the eight students for the Class of 2025.
She is a three-sport athlete, serving as captain for the high school varsity cross-country, track and swim teams. Blazer has received all-conference honors in cross-country and track – and qualified for state championships in both swimming and cross-country. She is also president of the school’s Key Club, a three-year member of Beta Club and has volunteered with Tennova’s Newport Medical Center.
“I want to play a role in helping the community that has helped me so much,” Blazer said.
Crystal McGaha, school counselor at CCHS, said that Blazer’s peers “look up to her as a calm, yet confident leader” and “find her upbeat and motivating – one who leads by example.”
“This year’s selection process was unlike any other we’ve conducted, with all interviews and other activities being online,” said Roan Director Scott Jeffress. “The result was the same, though: another outstanding class of talented young leaders. These students are already making a positive impact on our region.”
The Roan Scholars Leadership Program empowers students to be leaders of excellence who will positively impact the ETSU campus, our region, and the world. Each class is chosen from high school seniors nominated by eligible schools in Northeast Tennessee, Southwest Virginia and Western North Carolina.
The Roan offers four years of unique, out-of-the-classroom experiences and opportunities designed to challenge and inspire students to grow and develop as leaders. The scholarship also includes a financial award for tuition and fees, room and board, and books.
The Roan, which is funded primarily by private donations, was established by Louis H. Gump in 1997 and the first class entered in 2000. Jeffress says the eight scholars selected for the Class of 2025 represent the Roan values of leadership excellence and impact, as well as the legacy started by Gump that now expands over two decades.