An Interview On
University of Georgia

Background

Interview Date:July 2018

Gender Identity: Female
Race/Ethnicity: White
Graduation Year: 2018
Sexual Orientation: Straight
High School Experience: Private high school in Watkinsville, GA with a graduating class of about 75 people. Pretty much everyone went to college.
First Generation College Student: No
Major: Advertising
Minor: Studio Art
Extracurricular Activities: I was in a sorority, I was in Advertising Club, and I was in Talking Dog, which is a student-run advertising agency.

Have any of your extracurricular activities had a particularly big impact on your experience?
My sorority did and Talking Dog did. I was in Talking Dog for a year and it introduced me to a bunch of people who had similar mindsets and career goals outside of college.

Academic Experience

Can you describe your weekly coursework for your major?
I had a lot of group projects over the years. That entailed getting together with group members and working on creative briefs and that kind of stuff. I had a fair amount of reading. We hardly had any tests, it was mainly projects, whether it was me by myself writing a paper or doing a group project where we had to do a presentation in front of the class at the end. Throughout the semester we’d have case studies we’d have to read and write about, then usually the projects would be at the end of the class.

Is there anything that you feel your major’s department does especially well or especially poorly?
I think they do a good job of providing extracurricular opportunities to get involved in. For example, Advertising Club and Talking Dog were all provided to me through the advertising program. It made a big difference for the people who got involved in those programs. The people who didn’t ever go to a club meeting had a very different experience. I got a lot closer with people in my major and in the Advertising department, whereas I feel those people didn’t’.

How would you describe the learning environment? Do you think it’s particularly competitive or collaborative?
It was very collaborative. I don’t think it was competitive because we all had to work together and no one wanted to throw each other under the bus in group projects. It was done if people were really terrible.

What was your favorite class in your major?
I really liked Campaigns, which is the final capstone class for Advertising. You have a client and your work that whole semester on a campaign for them, and I felt that was the most representative class of the real world.

What was your least favorite class in your major?
Advertising and Society was difficult. It was an interesting class and I learned a lot. I just felt it was difficult and time-consuming, and I didn’t really like the professor. The professor’s knowledge was way over the class’.

Why did you choose your major? And are you happy with your choice?
I originally started out as a psychology major. I like thinking about the way people do things and think about things. I’ve also always been inclined to do something with art and that’s creative. I wanted to combine those, so I feel like advertising was a good decision because there’s a creative aspect and you’re dealing with people and the psychology of people.

On and Around Campus

Where have you lived on campus?
Freshman: I lived in Brumby with one other girl. That was a lot of fun because there was a strong sense of community.

Sophomore: I lived in an apartment off campus with two other girls.

Junior & Senior: I lived in a house with eight other girls. That was fun. It felt like a sorority house.

What was your favorite living situation?
I would say the house but there were so many people that it got chaotic at times. Maybe Brumby because I loved my roommate.

What is your favorite off-campus restaurant?
Thai Spoon

What is your favorite place to get away from campus?
The Botanical Gardens

Pros and cons of being located in Athens, GA?
Pros:
1) It’s close enough to Atlanta that if you need to go to a big city you can. It’s about an hour away.
2) It’s a small, residential town that feels homey. I wouldn’t want to go to college in Atlanta, but Atlanta is accessible.

Cons:
1) You get sick of going to the same places. I feel like I’ve tried everything.
2) There is some crime. It’s not a lot, but it’s definitely there. [There are 40 crimes per 1,000 residents in Athens, GA. That is higher than 74% of Georgia’s cities and towns.]

Social Opportunities

What kind of weekend activities or nightlife do you like to participate in?
With my sorority, there were a lot of events that would take place. We’d have socials on Thursday nights, and then on Friday and Saturday, I would sometimes go to the bars in downtown Athens. I would most consistently go out Thursdays and Saturdays.

What have been some of your favorite times at Georgia?
Football games were definitely a lot of fun. Going to parties and tailgates for those was a lot of fun, and just the whole gameday environment is fun. My sorority would put on a day party where we’d go hang out in a field and bring dates.

What was your favorite bar in Athens?
It changed so much over the years. Junior year it was Bar South, and senior year it was Blue Sky.

What is the impact of Greek life on nightlife?
I think there’s a line in Athens that are predominantly Greek people and there are bars that people in Greek life never go to. I think Greek life has a huge impact on the downtown scene because they’ll have socials and that bar is taken by that sorority or fraternity.

What’s an alternative to going to a party or bar that you like for a night out?
I loved going to see live music at the Georgia Theatre or Live Wire. Then I liked to go to the Iron Horse and I would go to the Botanical Gardens a lot, not necessarily instead of going out. When I didn’t go out or study, I would just hang out with my friends.

How happy are you with the nightlife at Georgia? Is there anything you would change if you could?
It was great while I was there. It was a lot of fun. Now when I visit it seems kind of heavy into binge drinking. There are some people who will go out every night of the week, but I was completely fine going out one or two nights a week.

Campus Culture

How did you meet your closest friends?
Through my sorority.

How would you describe the overall social scene at Georgia?
Exciting and busy. There are so many people I feel it’s hard not to make friends. There is always something going on, so you never have a reason to be bored.

To what extent do you feel people of different races and sexual orientation mix socially?
We have people of all different ethnicities and sexual orientations in the dining halls and in your classes. I got to know a lot of different kinds of people through my classes and group projects. Sometimes sororities have the same kind of person over and over again, but there are also some different people. [About 70% of undergraduates are White].

Do you think people are generally happy with their choice of Georgia? Do you think people love Georgia after they graduate?
I definitely do. It’s crazy to see how many people transferred into Georgia over the years. It’s such an amazing school, we’re so proud of our football team, and Athens is super fun. I know very few people who are unhappy. [About 1,550 transfer students entered in the Summer/Fall of 2017.]

What was your experience transitioning from a small school to a big university?
At first, the class sizes were intimidating. But, I realized through meeting so many people through sorority recruitment and other stuff that I knew so many people in the classes already, so that was comforting. You’re constantly meeting people, so it’s rare to go somewhere and not know anyone, which can be both annoying and comforting. The older you get the smaller your classes get. When I was a senior I had classes that were only like 20 people. If you’re in the Honors College, you can choose to take smaller classes, and if you take a lot of AP’s you can skip those big core classes.

I think the size is great because there are always new people to be friends with and new opportunities. If you don’t enjoy hanging out with a group of people you can find other ones really easily.

Careers

Has the alumni network helped you find internships or jobs?
Yeah, it has. I have so many connections on LinkedIn that are through UGA alums. Specifically, when I was in school I did a lot of shadowing at ad agencies, and so many alums helped me out there. I didn’t get the job I have now because of UGA, but I’ve had a lot of exposure to agencies and jobs because of UGA.

To what extent have you used the career office? How helpful have they been?
I used the advisor that’s specific Grady [School of Journalism], and I got a lot of help with my resume and cover letters and giving general advice for internships and stuff. I didn’t use the general career center that much, but that person that was specifically for my school I used.

Did you learn any computer programs that will be especially helpful for you professionally or for your course work?
I learned Photoshop and InDesign.

Financial Aid

Have you used financial aid? And how accommodating is the office been to your needs?
I used the HOPE Scholarship. That was awesome and saved me so much money. It’s also a big reason why so many in-state people go to Georgia. [16% of the Class of 2022 is from out of state.]

Advice for Prospective Freshmen

What is something you wish you knew before about Georgia when you entered as a freshman?
I wish it was a little bit clearer on what classes would be like when you first go in. When you go into freshman year most of the core classes are like 300-people lecture halls and that’s hard when you come from a really small private school where you get one on one attention.

What is something a prospective student interested in Greek life should know that we haven’t touched on?
I think it’s a great opportunity to meet people that you’re similar to and also are outside of your comfort zone. During the recruitment process, you meet a lot of people and even if you don’t end up in the same fraternity or sorority you still meet a lot of great people along the way. It’s a great way to get out of our comfort zone. I also don’t think it’s necessary to have a social life and make friends. People can do all the same things without Greek life. I really liked Greek life because of all the events. There was always something I could go to.

What is something a prospective student may miss on a visit that’s worth checking out?
Normaltown is a fun spot. There are a lot of good bars and restaurants. I think it gets overlooked because it’s a little bit outside of the campus area.

Reasons to attend Georgia:
1) It has so many opportunities with it being a big university. There are so many clubs and different majors that you can get involved with.
2) Athens is an amazing town. There are so many good restaurants and there’s a really fun nightlife. It’s also a great location because [Atlanta is accessible] or you can go 30 minutes outside of it and be in the country.
3) It’s a great school academically. You’ll get a great education.

Reasons to not attend Georgia:
1) Sometimes people get lost in the mix. If you don’t put yourself out there and get out of your comfort zone, sometimes people get lost.
2) There are really big classes freshman year.
3) If you’re not good at balancing nightlife and Greek life with academics.

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