Mitchell and Virk Selected as Finalists for Truman Scholarship

a collage of two diverse males standing in casual professional attire, smiling casually
Thomas Mitchell (left) and Zain Virk

Rhodes College is pleased to announce two juniors have been selected as finalists for the Truman Scholarship. They are Thomas Mitchell and Zain Virk – both of Tennessee. Finalists were selected based on their records of leadership, public service, and academic achievement.

In 1975, the Truman Scholarship Foundation was established by Congress as a federal memorial to the 33rd president, Harry S. Truman. It provides generous financial support for graduate study in preparation for careers in government, public service, the nonprofit sector, or education. The finalists will be interviewed on various dates in March and April, and winners announced in April. 

Mitchell is a political science and educational studies double major from Knoxville, TN. As a service scholar through the Bonner Program and a student director of Rhodes Kinney Program, he has been involved in campus-wide efforts to engage students in service. Mitchell currently serves as vice president of Rhodes Student Government and recently was elected president for the 2017-18 academic year. His plans after graduation are to pursue a master’s degree in public policy in education with a K-12 policy concentration and a juris doctor degree. 

Virk, who is from Germantown, TN, is pursuing a chemistry major and an English and religious studies double minor. On campus, he has served as the Kinney Program’s interfaith coordinator and president of the Muslim Students Association. He recently was elected president of the Honor Council. Virk says it was through an internship with the Baptist Memorial Health Care Corporation that he witnessed the impact of a large healthcare system on a city, and he hopes to attend medical school and work as a clinician, a researcher, and an administrator.