skip to main content

Trent Lott Leadership Institute

Motivate. Captivate. Inspire. Engage.

Jacob Fennell, Grace Dragna, and Bobby Hudson, Student Ambassadors for the Lott Institute

Jacob Fennell

Jacob Fennell, Student Ambassador for the Lott Institute
Follow the Lott Institute on Instagram

Follow the Lott Institute on Instagram

Jacob Fennell

Jacob Fennell is a Lott ambassador and a sophomore PPL major in the Lott Leadership Institute. As a member of the Inclusion Team with the Center for Inclusion and Cross Cultural Engagement, he works to teach and promote values of diversity and multiculturalism on campus.

Student Profile

Why did you choose to major in PPL at UM?
I chose to major in PPL because I wanted to study how our government institutions can work better and what role leadership plays in that process.

Go-to meal in Oxford?
A Cook Out Tray is always a great option.

What are you binge watching?
I’m currently binge watching The West Wing.

Has UM provided any leadership opportunities?
Yes! Most notably, I’ve had the opportunity to be a leader as a member of the Inclusion Team by leading conversations on issues and ideas that are important and that I really care about.

What are your career aspirations?
I plan to enroll in a Master’s in Public Policy program and pursue a career examining and working with the policy response to poverty in either government or an adjacent institution.

Have you had a lightbulb moment in a class?
Recently in my PPL class, I had a moment where I realized how much I was learning from the other students in the class. This is a community where everyone is actively committed to learning. Taking advantage of that commitment is something that I’d definitely recommend.

What’s an experience that made you feel empowered in class?
Before our midterm exam in my PPL class, our instructor told us to remember to bring ourselves and our experiences to the exam. This is an empowering mindset that I think is present throughout our program. Everyone is here for a reason and has something unique to bring to the table, so bring it!

Have professors at UM mentored you?
As I was working on a research proposal for her class, Dr. Vij mentored me on how I could improve my idea and apply it to an undergraduate thesis and even implement what I was learning and doing into an eventual career path.

How have you applied the skills you have learned in your PPL classes?
I spent a week in Washington D.C. with the Hertog Foundation this past summer and my experiences and skills from my PPL classes allowed me to think critically about the readings for the course and actively engage with the class in a way that allowed all of us to learn more.

Grace Dragna

Grace Dragna, Student Ambassador for the Lott Institute
Follow the Lott Institute on Instagram

Follow the Lott Institute on Instagram

Grace Dragna

As a Stamps Leadership Scholar and member of the Honors College, Grace Dragna seeks to apply her academic
endeavors to serve her community. Through her involvement with RebelTHON and the Associated Student Body
Senate, Grace values growth throughout the state of Mississippi and on campus.

Student Profile

Why did you choose to major in PPL at UM?
I want to be a problem-solver and a public servant. The Lott Institute allowed me to learn how to
achieve these goals within a community of incredible faculty and students who truly care about
making the world a better place.

Go-to meal in Oxford?
Anything from Rice and Spice!

What are you binge watching?
New Girl (again)

Has UM provided any leadership opportunities?
Through the Stamps Leadership Scholarship, UM allowed me to travel to the Stamps Scholars National Convention in Atlanta. At this conference, I had the ability to collaborate with student leaders from across the nation to develop plans for addressing mental health issues on our campus. This opportunity allowed me to represent UM as a student leader while learning from other passionate young people.

What are your career aspirations?
I want to work with health policy through conducting research or working for a think tank.

Bobby Hudson

Bobby Hudson, Student Ambassador for the Lott Institute
Follow the Lott Institute on Instagram

Follow the Lott Institute on Instagram

Bobby Hudson

Bobby Hudson is an energetic Public Policy Leadership major at the University of Mississippi, seeking to utilize his professional skills. He is knowledgeable and experienced in various leadership capacities and serves as a Peer Career Educator in the UM Career Center. He plans to utilize his diverse skill set to further his passion of working with policy in education.

Student Profile

Why did you choose to major in PPL at UM?
I chose to major in PPL because of the diverse and interdisciplinary curriculum. PPL has given me the opportunity to view policy through the lenses of other occupations, and analyze the importance and influence of these occupations in policy making. Overall the close knit classroom setting allows us to easily foster conversations about important topics that arise in policy.

Go-to meal in Oxford?
My all time favorite meal since attending Ole Miss is a nice homemade burger from Handy Andy’s, a family owned restaurant here in Oxford.

What are you binge watching?
Currently binge watching Marvels: Agents of Shield, it’s greats series I would recommend!

Has UM provided any leadership opportunities?
The University of Mississippi has given me the opportunity to explore a wide variety of leadership opportunities. I currently serve as the chartering President of the UM Chapter of Phi Beta Lambda and serve as one of two student members on the Climate Survey Working Group along with leadership capacities in multiple organizations on campus.

Have you had an opportunity to create an independent organization or business?
During the spring of 2019, I took the initiative to charter a chapter of Future Business Leaders of America- Phi Beta Lambda her at Ole Miss. Phi Beta Lambda is the collegiate division to the association and serves as a business organization.

What are your career aspirations?
My aspirations in life is to “Be Who God Called Me.” My goal is to influence, innovate, and reform education policy to be beneficial to all children. Ultimately, I would like to serve of Secretary of Education, but I am also prepared for the plans in store by God.