Finding Greatness: Thomas Smith

Author: News Bureau
Posted: Tuesday, April 11, 2017 2:50 PM
Categories: Honors/Awards | School of Education | Pressroom | Students


Macon, GA


Aspiring teacher and school principal Thomas Smith overcame childhood cancer to become a leader in high school and now at Middle Georgia State.

Full Name:
Thomas J. Smith III.

Age: 19.

Hometown & Residence: Kennesaw.

High School: North Cobb High School, where he lettered in football and track and field and participated in the Interact Club. "The Interact Club is a student-led club in conjunction with the North Cobb Rotary. We met twice a month along with a member from the Rotary Club to develop
community service projects and ideas. We participated in campus clean up days, Cobb Christmas, Shop with a Warrior and various other activities throughout the year. I was the recipient of the Acworth Mayor's Cup, which is a scholarship awarded to a student who achieves in and out of the
classroom, athletically and in the community."

Family: Parents, Thomas Smith and Diannia Smith, and siblings, Trenton Smith, 11, and Taylor Smith, 7.

Degree Objective: Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood & Special Education.

Class Rank: Sophomore.

Primary Campus: Cochran.

Activities: MGA Brothers of leadership and Distinction (BOLD) - Academic Excellence chairman; Peer Career Advisor- Cochran Campus president; and RA on the Cochran Campus. "I am currently working to be inducted into the National Society of Leadership and Success."

Career Goals: "I would like to start off teaching in an elementary school setting. Later I'd like to get a master's degree in leadership and move up to administration and become a school principal."

He chose Middle Georgia State University because … "I wanted to go to a smaller university so I would not be overwhelmed in my classes. Also, I wanted a chance to be a part of a new university and help make it great."

The greatest thing he discovered about Middle Georgia State after enrolling was … "You get the opportunity to develop relationships with the faculty, who go above and beyond to help you succeed."

His greatest academic experience as a Middle Georgia State student has been … "Taking Marla Thompson's Public Speaking class. She helped me come out of my shell. Believe me, I did not want to talk in front of a large group of people! I felt like I gained intangible skills taking her class."

To him, greatness means … "Waking up every morning and moving forward to accomplishing your goals."

People would be surprised to know ... "I was diagnosed with cancer (CNS lymphoma) when I was 2. I did a year of chemotherapy and have been in remission ever since. I strive to be my best and to prove that I have a purpose and that I am no different from anyone else. Even through I still struggle with things, I do the best I can to make my family and friends proud. That's one of the reasons I ran for Homecoming King."

In five years ... "I see myself teaching and continuing my education as I pursue a master's degree so I can become a school administrator and perhaps athletic director."