2020 Lincoln Laureate: J. Latrice Koger
Psychology major J. Latrice Koger is a U.S. Army veteran, a passionate community advocate who has earned many awards for her service, and a newly elected member of the Governors State University Board of Trustees. Now she can add 2020 Lincoln Laureate to her long list of accomplishments.
Of all her achievements, this one stands out, Latrice said.
“This award means as much to me, if not more than any of the others I have received. Being the Student Illinois Lincoln Laureate recipient showcases my achievements, but it is unique because I am not only representing myself, but I am also representing Governors State University,’’ Latrice said.
Latrice joins seniors from across the state who have been honored by the Lincoln Academy of Illinois for their contributions to the betterment of humanity and for overall excellence in curricular and extracurricular activities.
Latrice transferred to Governors State in 2019 as part of the university’s Dual Degree Program, a partnership with 17 Chicagoland community colleges, including Prairie State College. While pursuing her associate degree at Prairie State, Latrice was president of two national honor societies, Psi Beta National Honor Society for Psychology and Phi Theta Kappa, the international honor society of two-year colleges and academic programs, and received many awards for academic excellence and community service, including the President’s Award.
In 2012, she received President Obama’s Call to Service Award for her work as an executive board member of the National Action Network organization.
At Governors State, Latrice serves as treasurer for the Black Student Union, president of the Psychology Club, and is a member of the Student Disability Services Advisory Committee. She was a student representative to the Illinois Board of Higher Education Board of Trustees before being named to the university’s Board of Trustees.
Despite her extensive work with student clubs and community boards, Latrice maintains a perfect 4.0 GPA.
In nominating Latrice for the Lincoln Laureate honor, two professors and a staff member wrote:
“Latrice has distinguished herself from her peers through her outstanding academic performance, but also through her continual university volunteerism … It is rare to encounter a student that is involved in as many activities as Latrice. (She) prefers to spend her time making the university and the surrounding community a better place.”