UGA at Oxford event celebrates unique study abroad experience

On Sept. 12, friends of the University of Georgia will convene in London to welcome the newest participants of the UGA at Oxford program and celebrate one of the most unique study abroad experiences UGA has to offer.

For 30 years, UGA students have made their home in the stunning environs of the University of Oxford, enjoying the connection between one of the oldest universities in the United States and one of the oldest universities on the planet.

UGA at Oxford offers a vast array of courses in a wide range of disciplines—humanities, sciences, international affairs, business, communications, law and more—with sessions held throughout the year.

Despite being immersed in the Oxford student experience, UGA study abroad students still pay regular in-state tuition, covered by any existing financial aid—as if they were in Athens taking classes. The courses offer UGA credit towards each student’s major pathway, but they are taught by Oxford faculty in the distinctive Oxford style of undergraduate education.

That distinctive style is characterized by two key features: the “collegiate system” and the “tutorial model.” The collegiate system sees each student taught within the colleges—Oxford has 38 constituent colleges—but completing their education with six, three-hour exams set by the university, encouraging competition among the colleges. The core of a student’s education is made up of weekly, one-on-one, hour-long meetings with one of the college’s fellows, who is often a full professor and world-leading academic.

The tutorial model eschews the type of education that points students to specific lessons and textbook chapters, opting instead for a comprehensive approach in which a student is introduced to all available literature on a subject and must chart their own course. Each week, they create work examining the subject, discuss it with their tutor and defend the work from their tutor’s critiques.

Students who take part in UGA at Oxford are granted access to truly one-of-a-kind facilities. Depending on the focus and/or semester of their program, students live, work and play in the centuries-old halls of Keble College or Trinity College or UGA’s own UGA at Oxford Centre, a renovated nineteenth-century Victorian mansion in north Oxford.

UGA at Oxford alumni leave the program having enjoyed an unparalleled learning experience and embraced a different culture, two things that can have a profound impact on the student experience and, ultimately, our students’ lives.

If you will be in London on Tuesday, Sept. 12, we invite you to join us in welcoming the newest UGA at Oxford students and celebrating the program and people who make this singular learning experience possible.

Meredith Dean among seven Grady College alumni inducted into UGA’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2018

by Jessica Twine

The University of Georgia’s Alumni Association annually recognizes outstanding alumni who have made an impact in their careers through its 40 Under 40 program. Grady College is proud to have seven honorees in the 40 Under 40 Class of 2018: Brooke Bowen (ABJ ‘07, JD ‘10), Chase Cain (ABJ ’05), Meredith Dean (ABJ ‘14), Josh Delaney (ABJ’11, AB ‘11), Ivey Evans (ABJ ’06, BBA ’06, MBA ‘13), Quanza Griffin (ABJ ‘01) and Lauren Pearson (ABJ ‘02).

Selections were based on the graduates’ commitment to a lifelong relationship with UGA and their impact in business, leadership, community, artistic, research, educational and/or philanthropic endeavors. The 2018 Class will be honored at the award ceremony on Sept. 13 at the Georgia Aquarium.

Grady College will release profiles of the winners leading up to the awards ceremony.

Name: Meredith Dean

Graduation Year: 2014

Current Occupation: Founder, The Dean’s List and program coordinator, Seacrest Studios

How did Grady College help prepare you for your career?

Without Grady, I never would have learned any of the tech skills (especially Adobe Creative Suite) needed to start my digital branding company, The Dean’s List, or developed nearly as many professional connections for my career. The New Media Institute taught me the importance of knowing how to code and use graphic design while the broadcasting curriculum prepared me immensely for becoming the media professional I am today. Thanks to the faculty and staff that share their plethora of real life experience, every lesson or concept that I learned in the classroom actually translated into the real world. I am eternally grateful to Grady and can’t imagine what life would have been like if I picked a different school.

What advice do you have for today’s Grady College students/young professionals?

Grady will give you endless opportunities if you take advantage of the vast alumni network we have. You can go to any state and find a home with a Grady connection. When I worked in New York City, countless times I would meet Grady grads —whether it be a producer at MTV or Amy Robach who invited me on set as her guest at Good Morning America after I reached out to her. I now work at Seacrest Studios because of a Grady grad connection who runs the Nashville Seacrest Studios.  I am a walking example of how the Grady family looks out for each other. I will always do what I can to help a Grady student, as would countless other alumni, so don’t be afraid to ask for help.

What has been the most important lesson you’ve learned as you’ve navigated through your career?

Always empower others and stay curious. Every single person you meet could change the entire course of your life and vice versa. There is a Ted Talk called “Lollipop Moment” that has shaped the way I look at every interaction. Don’t brush people off or think that you don’t need to learn about that concept/person. In my opinion, people who are successful want to learn something about everything and can find fulfillment in even the smallest of things. For an example in media, every reporter used to have a cameraman. Nowadays, every reporter (or MMJ) needs to know how to shoot their own stories/stand ups, video edit, write their script for web, create their graphics, post on social and go on-air all in one day. Stay hungry by craving knowledge.

Meredith HouseDescribe a moment in your professional/personal career that you are most proud of.

I am most proud of how many patients and families’ lives we have been able to touch at Levine Children’s Hospital through our programming at Seacrest Studios. To see the emotional, spiritual and physical healing of these strong kids through music, new media, radio and TV is awe-inspiring. There is nothing like having a former patient come back to the studio just to visit as a happy and healthy child. Additionally, I have branded and career counseled over 100 clients all over the world with TDL. To focus on our mission of empowering women everywhere, I donate 10% of my profits to Habitat Aid Initiative, my family’s non-profit in Western Kenya. I have built a dormitory at Khwisero Girls School (Meredith House) and plan to build several more. My hope is to change the world little by little by helping these women in their educational pursuits and get my clients their dream jobs.

Originally published by the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication.

Meet Julie Wade, new UGA Alumni Association board member and previous 40 Under 40 honoree

When Julie Wade (AB ’96, JD ’00) first stepped foot on the University of Georgia campus to begin her undergraduate education she never envisioned attending law school—she also never imagined having the opportunity to serve on the UGA Alumni Association Board of Directors more than 20 years later.

In her new role on the alumni board, Julie looks forward to continuing her history of giving to the university. “It’s an incredible honor. There are so many distinguished and amazing people on the board and I am excited to contribute what I can and become more fully engaged and immersed in the Bulldog experience.”

The Wade FamilyJulie is the executive director of Park Place Outreach Emergency Youth Shelter, a temporary residential home for at-risk youth ages 11-17 in Savannah, Georgia. Prior to working with Park Place, Julie clerked for a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit and practiced law in both Hawaii and Boston. In Savannah, she practiced law at The Wade Law Firm, Hunter Maclean and the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

In addition to her directorship and serving on the alumni board, Julie is committed to giving back to her local community. She serves on the board of directors for Girls on the Run, America’s Second Harvest of Coastal Georgia and Educate Chatham. Julie is also committed to giving back to UGA; she and her husband, Drew Wade (BS ’97, AB ’97), have been making annual gifts to the university for 24 consecutive years.

In celebration of her impressive career pursuits, her ongoing dedication to her community and strong demonstration of leadership, Julie was recognized by the UGA Alumni Association as a 40 Under 40 honoree in 2011.

Julie offers the following advice for UGA students: “Embrace all the opportunities that come with being a student at Georgia—join clubs, join organizations, get to know professors, and dive in. By doing so, you’ll make richer experiences and better connections—all which will serve you in the long term. It’s about so much more than just going to class and making good grades.”

Meet new alumni board member Truitt Eavenson (BSAE ’83)

When Truitt Eavenson transferred to the University of Georgia from Emmanuel College, he was not sure about which career path to take. Eavenson, who grew up on a farm in Carnesville, Georgia, began looking through the course catalog and was fascinated with agricultural engineering. Once he met with the department head, Robert Brown, he committed to studying agricultural engineering.

Now, more than 20 years later, Eavenson is the vice president of Georgia Power in the Southeast region thanks to the education he received at UGA. To that end, he is dedicating his time to giving back to the place that helped shape him by serving on the board of the UGA Alumni Association.

“No matter what your career is or where you go in life you really don’t get there alone. There are always people helping you,” says Eavenson. “I think that we have a responsibility to go back and help people who are behind us be successful.”

Prior to joining the alumni board, he served on the College of Engineering and College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences advisory boards. He often returns to campus to speak to undergraduates, and hopes to prepare students for life after graduation.

“I really just want to make a difference. When my service is finished with whatever I am doing, I want people to say ‘I’m really glad he was here; he really did make a difference.’”

Eavenson offered advice to students preparing for life at UGA and beyond: “You can go to college for four years, and you can graduate with a degree, and go get a great job,” he said. “Or you can come to Athens and really get involved in the university. Look for the opportunities that are available to you and have an experience that you’ll always cherish and always be glad you did.”

 

Catching up with Mohamed Massaquoi, 40 Under 40 honoree and UGA Alumni Board member

Mohamed MassaquoiContributed by former digital marketing intern Alvieann Chandler (ABJ ’13, AB ’18) during her time in the Division of Development and Alumni Relations Office of Communications

Mohamed Massaquoi (BS ’08) is mastering the art of reinvention. The former UGA football standout began his career in the NFL as a wide receiver for the Cleveland Browns, and after retiring, he worked in finance for Morgan Stanley. In 2017, an ATV accident caused him to lose four fingers on his left hand, and he now wears a prosthetic. The accident gave Massaquoi a new perspective on life, and he started a new chapter as a motivational speaker and fitness advocate. He also helps former athletes transition into the business world.  

“I think it’s very important that people take full advantage of all the opportunities that they have right now, because you never know what could happen between now and whenever you plan to take that leap of faith,” Massaquoi said. 

Now, as a 2018 40 Under 40 honoree and UGA Alumni Association Board member, he hopes to foster relationships between alumni and their alma mater.  

“It was an honor to be named to UGA’s 40 Under 40 list. To think about how many people come through UGA, to be nominated is a great honor– something I don’t take lightly,” he said. 

In addition to giving back to UGA, he is on the board of Sunshine on a Ranney Day, a nonprofit organization that provides home modifications for children with disabilities, and Read with Malcolm, a literacy program founded by fellow UGA football star Malcolm Mitchell (AB ’15). Massaquoi is also learning how to play tennis – to exercise his competitive side, but to also support young amputees. 

“I enjoy competing, and I think tennis gives me an ability to continue to do that,” Massaquoi said. “One of the reasons why I want to get good at tennis is to start a tennis tournament to raise money for kids with amputations so they can afford prosthetic devices.” 

Nothing seems to slow Massaquoi down – a reason why he’s worthy of being named to UGA’s 40 Under 40. 

“Whenever you have the opportunity to do something,” he continued, “I feel like it is your human responsibility to follow through at the highest level that you can.” 

The First UGA Tradition: Freshman Welcome

Before Calling the Dawgs at the first home game of the season, ringing the Chapel Bell after acing a test or passing through the arch after graduation, each University of Georgia student steps barefoot Between the Hedges and assembles into the iconic “G” for their official class photo during Freshman Welcome.

Freshman Welcome is an annual event hosted by the Student Alumni Council, Student Alumni Association and the Office of the President. This event provides the opportunity for first-year students to stand under the Sanford Stadium lights and be officially welcomed into the Bulldog family.

This year, Freshman Welcome occurred on Sunday, August 11, with a pre-party in Reed Plaza featuring a rock climbing wall, snow cones, a mechanical bulldog and upperclassman celebrating the arrival of the Class of 2022.

 

 

 

After much anticipation, UGA ’22 was welcomed into the stadium for the first time as students at the University of Georgia. Prior to stepping foot on the field, first-year students were greeted by Student Government Association President Ammishaddai Grand-Jean and Student Alumni Council President Nash Davis. Following, UGA President Jere Morehead (JD ’80) welcomed the students to the University. UGA ’22 also heard from head football coach, Kirby Smart (BBA ’98) and men’s basketball head coach, Tom Crean.

After learning the game day cheers and traditions, UGA ’22 took to the field for their official class photo. Following the photograph, students snapped photos on the field before going back to their residence halls to prep for their first day of college classes.

 

Welcome to the Bulldog family, Class of 2022! We’re so glad you’re here.

Posted by University of Georgia on Sunday, August 12, 2018

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Alumni spotlight: Chuck McCarthy

We caught up with Chuck McCarthy (AB ’03), artist, actor and founder of The People Walker, to talk about how his UGA experience led him to an unexpected, but satisfying, career path. McCarthy’s one-of-a-kind business is a combination of the services provided by a personal trainer and a dog walker. The People Walker’s mission is to connect people who want to go on a walk with walking partners.

Chuck McCarthy, The People Walker

What did you want to be when you grew up?                      

I wanted to go into medicine because my grandfather was a doctor. I originally started school as a pre-med major but then went into the art school. I didn’t know what I specifically wanted to be, but I knew I had to do something creative. Art school prepared me for life because it was so subjective. There was no right or wrong answer for most things in the art world. That’s true for a lot of things when you graduate.

Walk me through the foundation of your business, The People Walker. Tell me about the very first moment this brilliant idea came about.

At first, the idea came up as a joke. I was looking for a way to make money while getting more exercise, so I thought about being a dog walker. But I didn’t want to pick up dog poop. There’s a lot of personal trainers and dog walkers in Los Angeles, so I thought maybe I’ll just start walking with people.

The more I thought about it, the more I realized that there were people who would want or need this service. People could use my company for two services: motivation and safety. We know that we need exercise but it can be hard to motivate ourselves to walk. Even the most motivated people need someone to hold themselves accountable. Then, safety was also an essential service. A few years ago, my mom went on a walk alone in the woods and fell. She broke her leg in about seven different places. People need safety from falling down, being alone, being cat-called or being bothered by others.

Chuck McCarthy, The People Walker

What is your favorite thing to do in Los Angeles?

I love to go on hikes. Even with all the walking I do, I still find myself finding new paths in the park that I live next to. You feel like an explorer when you find new places by yourself. There’s a book about a lot of the secret stairs here in L.A. but I’ve been reluctant to read it because I want to find them myself.

What advice would you give to graduating seniors and recent graduates?

Find a job and don’t be scared to do something that isn’t exactly what you want to do. But, don’t feel like you have to stay in that job. A lot of times, people discover that they are working at a job that can lead to other opportunities. Get your foot in the door, but don’t get your foot stuck in the door. That sounds like a good saying, right?

What’s the biggest risk you’ve taken that resulted in the most rewarding outcome?

Moving to California was a pretty big risk. It led to the life that I live today.

What do you know for sure?

There are always gonna be problems in life. But life is really about trying to deal with those problems. It’s always easier to deal with those problems if you have the help and support from other people.

What will you never understand? 

Why someone would go anywhere other than UGA.

Is there anything you wish you could change when looking back at your career decisions? 

No, because I think that everything you do leads to the next part of your life. You can’t be in this moment right now in your life without having made the mistakes that you’ve made, the wins that you’ve had and the right decisions you’ve made – you went to the high school, you went to and played whatever sports you did as a kid. Whether or not you won or lost a game, passed or failed the test, or lost money or made money that has led up to where you are in your life. You can’t really get rid of one thing without getting rid of everything else.

Make history at 1785 Day

The Student Alumni Association (SAA) has issued a challenge to the entire campus–to get 1,785 student donors to give $17.85. This will all lead up to 1785 Day which will take place in Tate Plaza on August 16 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. This event will include free t-shirts, food and photos with Hairy Dawg for students who donate. 

The SAA is an association for UGA students to network and engage with alumni. The SAA is governed by the Student Alumni Council (SAC) who promotes UGA traditions, cultivates student philanthropy and connects students to alumni.  

This is the first event of its kind that the SAA is putting on and Nash Davis, the president of the SAC, could not be more excited to start the school year off with a strong campaign.  

“We want to celebrate the institution that we know and love and try to help everyone realize how lucky we are. We also want everyone to know how much SAA and SAC can impact a student’s experience,” Davis said. 

Davis joined the SAA his freshmen year after a search of how to be more involved on campus. Once he found out what the SAA does, he knew it was a place for him.  

“I stress the opportunities that our organization can give these students and how we truly enjoy setting them up for success, and we’ll do anything in our power to help them be successful,” Davis said.  

When students donate as a part of 1785 Day, they will automatically become a member of the SAA and will receive exclusive benefits such as professional development, spirit days, involvement opportunities and a free SAA t-shirt. The SAA hosts events throughout the school year such as Freshmen Welcome and ghost tours of North Campus. Members of the SAA also get exclusive opportunities to network with UGA alumni at events such as the monthly Advice from the Big Dawgs lunch and Dinner with a Dozen Dawgs.  

Usually membership dues are $20, but in honor of the event, every donation of $17.85 includes membership. Davis looks forward to 1785 Day because it means that more students will be members of the SAA early in the year so they can participate in the events all year long. 

Ja’Kyra Austin is the SAC’s Vice President of Membership, and she joined the SAA after she transferred to UGA.  

“A phrase we often hear in the council  is ‘planting a tree, even if we don’t get to enjoy its shade’ and it has been something we remind ourselves of not only when we donate but also when we are encouraging others to donate,” Austin said. “We shouldn’t wait to donate until after graduating, when our small gift could change a life or improve our campus today.” 

Austin is passionate about helping others students find what they are passionate about because she knows from personal experience the struggle of finding out what to do after college. She donates to the Career Center so that they can help other people find their way during college and afterwards.  

Student philanthropy helps to support need and merit-based scholarships, experiential learning opportunities and any other area of campus students designate when they make their gifts. Of the $17.85 students donate, $7.85 will go to the Georgia Fund to support the student experience at UGA and $10 can be designated to a school, college, department or program the student is passionate about.  

Join Davis and Austin in honoring UGA’s history by making history with the SAA at 1785 Day!

40 Under 40 reflections: Sam Watson

The 40 Under 40 program began in 2011, and celebrates the personal, professional and philanthropic achievements of young UGA graduates. To continue our 40 Under 40 coverage, we caught up with three agriculture professionals–Sam Watson, Travis Moore and Amelia Dortch–from the 2017 honoree class to learn about their career journeys and the wisdom they’ve gained along the way. 

Meet Sam Watson

  • 40 Under 40 Class of 2017
  • BSA ’02
  • Farmer at Chill C Farms and Georgia state representative

Sam Watson, 2017 40 Under 40 honoree

Sam Watson balances being a Georgia farmer and state representative by taking things one day at a time. As a farmer, he grows, ships and packs bell peppers, squash, eggplant, cucumbers, cabbage and tomatoes. He also raises cattle. As a state representative, he represents District 172 and serves on the rural caucus. We caught up with Watson to discuss how the 40 Under 40 program has impacted him a year later and about the value of a UGA education.

Nailing his dream job

“A career in agriculture is what I’ve always wanted to do. My first job out of college was with a large vegetable operation which led to my interest in produce. I grew up as a livestock kid so vegetable production was a big change for me.”

Being named 40 Under 40

“I am very appreciative. One of the driving forces behind my decision to run for the State House was to try to be a voice for rural Georgia and agriculture. It’s an essential part of our state’s economy, but there are only a few people in state government who have a solid understanding of the challenges facing communities like mine. Being recognized with 40 Under 40 gives me another opportunity to share the importance of my industry–and to advocate for, not just agriculture, but for rural communities across our state.”

Sam Watson, 2017 40 Under 40 honoree

Greatest risk–an even better reward

“In December of 2012, I quit my ‘real’ job to run for State Representative for House District 172 and farm full time. There were no guarantees that I would be successful at either, but I prayed about it and took a giant leap of faith, and here I am. Some months are certainly more stressful than others, but I remind myself to do the duty that lies nearest.”

Lessons from UGA

“UGA provided me with a quality education, but also forced me outside my comfort zone. If that didn’t happen I wouldn’t have ever left the farm and been able to help make an impact today.”

Words of wisdom

“Work hard – no amount of education can make up for a poor work ethic.”

Career destination

“My career goals are to grow my farming operation, help feed the world and continue to make our state a great place to live and to work and raise a family on the farm.”