LSU Junior Micaela de Gruy Named Prestigious Truman Scholar, Becomes Fifth LSU Student to Receive the Award

The Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation has announced that LSU junior Micaela de Gruy of Baton Rouge is among 60 students nationwide to receive the prestigious Truman Scholarship. She is the only student from Louisiana selected to receive the Truman Scholarship this year.

“We are proud of Micaela and all of LSU’s Truman Scholars over the past few years,” said LSU Chancellor Michael Martin. “This is proof that LSU students are performing at a very high level nationally, and LSU is doing its part as a university committed to excellence in everything it does.”

De Gruy, a mass communication and LSU Honors College student, will graduate from LSU in December.

Micaela de Gruy

“I never expected to receive any honor of this caliber. I have proof now that dedication and passion really can get you where you want to be,” de Gruy said. “It has been a truly humbling experience to be around other finalists and hear about their accomplishments. I promise to use this opportunity for the benefit of others; my future is not about me, but about the kind of change I can make in the world.”

After graduation, de Gruy hopes to attend the Boston College Graduate School of Social Work. She plans to pursue both a master’s degree and Ph.D. in social work and would like to work for the International Rescue Committee, recruiting and training volunteers to serve refugee camps in Africa.

“We have the best media and politics program in the country – this is an example of why,” said John Maxwell Hamilton, dean of the LSU Manship School of Mass Communication.

De Gruy joins four other LSU students who have received Truman Scholarships to date: Claire Kendig in 2008, Cynthia “CC” Dubois in 2006, Jacob Landry in 2005 and Allen Richey in 2003. In six of the past seven years, an LSU student has reached the finalist stage of the Truman Scholarship process.  

“LSU can be very proud of Micaela, who exemplifies the dedication to both academic excellence and service to the community that we all share here on this campus,” said Nancy Clark, LSU Honors College dean. “She follows in a growing LSU tradition of students who have been recognized as tomorrow’s leaders by the Truman Foundation.”

The scholarship provides up to $30,000 for graduate study, along with priority admission and supplemental financial aid at some premier graduate institutions, leadership training, career and graduate school counseling and special internship opportunities within the federal government. The 2008 Truman Scholars will assemble May 26 for a leadership development program at William Jewell College in Liberty, Mo., and will receive their awards in a special ceremony at the Truman Library in Independence, Mo., on May 31.

The 60 Truman Scholars this year represent 55 colleges and universities across the United States. The recipients were selected from 601 candidates nominated by 289 colleges and universities.

“Inspired by her studies in international development, Micaela is now educating herself to become a leader in a field of global development that is virtually unexplored: global social work,” said Drew Lamonica Arms, LSU Honors College director of fellowship advising. “Micaela is a remarkable combination of passion and poise, and she has great potential to be a ‘change agent’ on a global scale. I could not be more proud of her and thrilled that she has been recognized by the Truman Foundation for her achievements.”

The Truman Scholarship Foundation was established by Congress in 1975 as the federal memorial to the 33rd president. The mission of the Truman Scholarship Foundation is to find and recognize college students with exceptional leadership potential who are committed to careers in government, the nonprofit or advocacy sectors, education or elsewhere in public service; and to provide them with financial support for graduate study, leadership training and fellowship with other students who are committed to making a difference through public service.

Truman Scholars are required to work in public service for three of the seven years following completion of a foundation-funded graduate degree program as a condition of their receiving Truman funds. Part of the application process is for the students to create policy to address a current issue.

LSU’s Office of Fellowship Advising was created to assist students in applying for prestigious scholarships and fellowships, such as the Rhodes, Marshall, Gates, Mitchell, Udall, Truman and Goldwater awards. Students interested in applying for these and other scholarship opportunities or for more information, contact

Ernie Ballard | Writer | Office of Communications & University Relations
February 2009