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Georgia Army veteran, former high school dropout set to graduate college

The 31-year-old mother who previously served in Afghanistan graduates Tuesday. She'll start her next chapter as a researcher in a pathogen laboratory at UGA.

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — Once a high school dropout, a Georgia Army veteran is now celebrating becoming a college graduate.

After leaving grade school at just 16, serving in Afghanistan, and having a child, Morgan George has now set to accomplish a milestone achievement. A statement from Georgia Gwinnett College said the 31-year-old mother is graduating from the school on Tuesday.

"I was lucky to have unwavering support from my daughter and my parents throughout this journey,” she said.

George found herself at a recruiting station after dropping out of high school. She signed up to serve in the U.S. Army as a veterinary tech, helping take care of military working dogs. Part of her service included a 2009 sojourn to Afghanistan attached to the 101st Airborne Division. According to the statement from Georgia Gwinnett, she traveled in the most dangerous conditions imaginable tending to military pups along the way.

Her service also took her to Japan after the 2011 Tōhoku Earthquake and Tsunami. There, she said she found her passion for service, uncovering how she can help "save the world" through environmental science. 

Once she receives her diploma this week, she'll prepare to take on her newest adventure.

"I, the girl who dropped out of high school and became a single mother at 22, am graduating with a Bachelor of Science in environmental science," George said. "I realized through the course of attending GGC that the world is a very finite place. Can you imagine a world where my grandkids would have no idea what a coral reef is? That’s not the world that I want my daughter to see. That’s why I’m taking this journey – because the world needs more help."

After graduation Morgan will start her next chapter as a researcher in a pathogen laboratory at the University of Georgia.

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