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Student Receives Madison Memorial Fellowship


JONESBORO – Morgan Seelinger Garland, a graduate student at Arkansas State University, has been awarded the James Madison Memorial Fellowship through the James Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation. The fellowship is considered America’s most prestigious award in constitutional history and government for secondary school teachers.

“I feel blessed to have been awarded this opportunity to further my academic and professional career through this foundation,” said Garland. “The fellowship will prepare me to send my future students into the world armed with an applicable knowledge of the Constitution that they learned in my classroom. My hope is to facilitate the development of productive citizens and future world changers. The experiences of this fellowship will benefit me along with a future generation of students that it will be my privilege to educate.”

Fellowships are awarded to both current teachers (Senior Fellows) and prospective teachers (Junior Fellows). Through the foundation, Garland will receive a $24,000 Junior Fellowship for her future graduate work.  She will also attend the month-long summer institute at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., where she will study under the nation’s leading Constitutional scholars.

Garland is currently working on her Master of Science in Education degree in social science and is due to graduate in December 2018. Garland’s faculty mentor at A-State is Dr. Kellie Buford, assistant professor of history, and she works with history students who are pursuing teacher education degrees. Buford was a 2004 James Madison Fellow for North Carolina State University. 

"Morgan is the epitome of hard work, commitment, passion and professionalism in secondary social studies education,” said Buford.  “I have trained many social studies teachers in my career and Morgan is among the brightest.  I am so proud to say she is one of my students.  She will be among those who shake up the world."

The James Madison Fellowships were created to honor Madison's legacy and Madisonian principles by providing support for graduate study that focuses on the Constitution — its history and contemporary relevance to the practices and policies of democratic government. Fellows gain a deeper understanding of the principles of constitutional government that in turn transmit to students.

Upon graduation from Bryant High School, Garland enrolled in Arkansas State and earned her Bachelor of Science in Education degree in social science in the fall of 2014. While at A-State, Garland was a member of Alpha Gamma Delta, an A-State cheerleader, a Red Wolf Ambassador and served on leadership teams at both First Baptist Church and the Baptist Collegiate Ministry.

Garland began her teaching career at Harrisburg High School after graduation where she taught civics, economics, pre-advanced placement world history and psychology. Along with teaching, Garland served as a class sponsor and volunteered in a variety of extra-curricular activities. She also led her students in advocating against a proposed book censorship and was recognized by the Zinn Education Project located in Washington, D.C.

After teaching for a year-and-a-half at HHS, Garland decided to further her education by enrolling in the MSE program in social science. She plans to return to teaching. However, she has her sights set long-term on a job dealing with the analysis and development of education policy.

Morgan Garland
Morgan Garland