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James Logan Ballard

Alan J. Jaworski Science Award, Life Science

Dr. Alan Jaworski was a professor of botany and an outstanding teacher and researcher. He was exceptionally dedicated to helping Honors students achieve their maximum potential. This award was created in his memory to recognize outstanding male students in the sciences. It is one of the highest honors that the Honors Program can bestow on male students majoring in the sciences.


Majors: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; Microbiology
Hometown: Cumming, Georgia

Activities/Honors: Presidential Award of Excellence, First Honor Graduate, recipient of the Alan J. Jaworski Science Award and the Microbiology Outstanding Undergraduate Award, Demosthenian Literary Society member, Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center volunteer and recipient of the CURO Graduation Distinction for undergraduate thesis

What I like most about the Honors Program: Through the Honors Program, I was able to meet many people with similar interests through smaller Honors section classes. Also, it was with the support of the Honors Program (through the Honors International Scholars Program) that I was able to attend the Cortona Maymester in 2019 and expand my horizons.

Why I chose my majors: I came to UGA as a microbiology major because of my interest in infectious diseases and bacteria, hoping to eventually pursue a career in disease medicine. After meeting my current research mentor, Dr. Stephen Hajduk, I added my biochemistry major as I became more interested in the molecular bases of diseases and their interactions with the human body.

Post-graduation plans: After a gap year in Athens, during which I will work and build more clinical experience, I plan to attend medical school.