Throughout her life, Morgan has always been involved in a variety of activities. Though she has been serving her community from a young age, her true passion for service arose upon her entry to high school. At the start of her freshman year, Morgan began working as a candy striper. As Vice-President of the Hoag Hospital Auxiliary Board of Volunteers her junior year, and Director of the Cancer Center Volunteers her senior year, Morgan was responsible for managing and organizing the operation of the Cancer Center Candy Striping Program, training the active candy striping personnel, leading one-on-one training sessions for new candy stripers, scheduling all shifts, assisting with patient and administrative needs, attending monthly board and general meetings, and speaking at monthly program orientations, and ultimately training her successor. In her teaching, she aimed to instill that intrinsic passion for helping others that the patients within the Cancer Center had inspired within her. Morgan truly values her experience, seeing people that were facing death in the near future remain happy and positive was an extremely humbling experience.
While continuing her work at the hospital, Morgan’s love for service was sparked through a personal experience. Through a series of unexpected events, Morgan was diagnosed with Alopecia Areata, an autoimmune disease that results in varying degrees of hair loss. Rather than letting this overcome her, she used her experience to reach out to others who were experiencing this disease as well. Morgan founded HAATS (Helping Alopecia Areata Teens), in hopes that she could provide support for kids and teens that are bald due to the disease’s devastating effects. She organized pen pal programs, led hat drives, and coordinated fundraising events in hopes that her efforts would not only raise awareness, but also connect teens with other teens that were experiencing similar side effects and emotions.
Morgan’s time spent serving her community proved to be rewarding on so many levels, yet she was surprised by the amount of students in her own high school that were unaware of the plethora of philanthropic opportunities available in the local community. With the help of other student leaders on campus, Morgan planned the first-ever, community wide, philanthropy fair for her high school. Her ultimate goal was to help students realize that if just a small amount of time were redirected into a philanthropic effort, then the combined effort would serve to better the community.
During her first year at Vanderbilt, Morgan spent her time dabbling in various areas of service. She volunteered with Nashville Mobile Market, the Susan Gray School at the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center, the Fannie Battle Day Home for Children, as well as refurbishing different centers in the nearby community. Whether it was painting the walls of an elementary school, distributing food to the hungry, or spending time tutoring children, Morgan has learned many valuable lessons that she will carry with her during sophomore year. Through her different service endeavors, she hopes to both continue her past efforts, as well as hone in on new opportunities that may arise in the Nashville community.
Morgan is thankful for the Ingram Scholarship Program because it allows her to develop her current initiatives as well as explore other outreach programs at Vanderbilt University. Through the support of the Ingram Scholarship Program, she dreams to motivate and educate others, all in the hopes of drawing the community closer.