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UNG junior nursing major elected to statewide office, marking a first for the university

2017-11-27-ShannonWilliams
University of North Georgia (UNG) junior Shannon Williams was elected as chairman of the Council of School Presidents (COSP) for the Georgia Association of Nursing Students (GANS). Williams, a 43-year-old nursing major, is the first UNG student to be elected to the state organization.

After spending almost 20 years serving the public as a firefighter and paramedic, Shannon Williams wanted to spend more time with his patients. That’s when the now-43-year-old enrolled in the Bachelors of Science nursing program at the University of North Georgia (UNG) to become a full-time nurse.

What Williams did not count on was being elected to serve as the chairman of the Council of School Presidents (COSP) for the Georgia Association of Nursing Students (GANS). Williams, a junior, is the first UNG nursing student to be elected to the state organization. The odd thing is Williams did not really want the job at first.

"I was not one of the students who wanted to run for this position," the Cumming, Georgia, man said. "I was nominated, and I did not accept the nomination."

As a full-time UNG student with a part-time paramedic at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta, he knew if he won it would equal less free time with his wife.

"My wife and my professors encouraged me to do it," he said.

Williams accepted the nomination and won the election. Now, his responsibilities include planning and running COSP biannual meetings, managing its Facebook and email groups, communicating between National Student Nurses Association (NSNA) Presidents and the GANS Executive Board, attending monthly membership committee meetings, and consulting with other GANS presidents.

"Being the first UNG student on the state board, I hope to lead by example … and to get more UNG students to run for statewide offices," Williams said.

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