Amazing Students Profiles

Melina Baetti

Melina Baetti

Senior Melina Baetti is the president of the Hispanic Student Association. Under her leadership membership representation has grown to more than 15 countries. The group has co-sponsored events with the Institute for Women’s Studies, the Black Affairs Council and the UGA Alumni Association during Baetti’s term. Off-campus, she has been involved in community service, serving as translator for the doctors and patients at Mercy Health Center, a nonprofit health clinic in Athens; serving as a translator for parent-teacher conferences for dozens of elementary and middle schools in the area; and working as a parent liaison with Bright Futures Learning to help facilitate the Spanish/English communications and translations in Athens. She interned with Coca-Cola last summer, and she is a team leader for Hoop Girls, the public relations and promotions squad for the UGA men’s basketball team. She was named a 2007 Pandora Outstanding Senior Leader and will graduate in May with degrees in public relations and French. She hopes to pursue a career in international public relations.


Roswell, Ga.

High School:

Alan C. Pope High School

Degree objective:

A.B.J. in public relations and a B.A. in French with a minor in sociology

Expected graduation:

Spring 2007

University highlights, achievements, awards and scholarships:

From my start at UGA, I have been involved in various organizations and have really stuck with them. I joined the Hispanic Student Association as a freshman and was elected president this year. Additionally, I am a Hoop Girl, because I have always loved basketball, and I am considering work in sports public relations. This year I was a team leader, and I organized a group of 30 women to help with our promotions efforts for the UGA men’s basketball team. Furthermore, I am a member of various advisory and discussion boards on campus, including one that meets with all the Latino leaders on campus. I am very involved with volunteer translating in the Athens area, and I have been a medical interpreter for the past 3 years. I also interpret at parent-teacher conferences at local elementary and middle schools, and at other events as needed. I was greatly honored this year when the Pandora yearbook named me an Outstanding Senior Leader for all of the work I have done on and off campus.

Current Employment:

I have a part-time job as a parent liaison with Bright Futures Learning doing Spanish/English communications and translations here in Athens. I have worked mostly at Fourth Street Elementary School, which has a very high Hispanic student population.

I chose to attend UGA because…

…of the prestige of the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication. I was able to receive the Hope Scholarship, and I knew that UGA was the right place for me. I loved the campus when I came to visit, and I knew that through the Honors program I would be challenged and have many opportunities to learn outside of the classroom. I also knew that I wanted to stay in Georgia because I wanted to be close to my family and to be able to visit my sisters and parents whenever possible.

My favorite things to do on campus are…

…attending athletic events, playing outdoor and indoor soccer and tennis, attending lectures on topics of interest, going to special events brought by University Union, supporting student groups and their causes and meeting new people through any way possible. I always wish I had time to do more. Every night of the week there is something exciting happening on our campus, and it would be great to be able to participate in everything.

When I have free time, I like…

…to play tennis, to listen to music, or to hang out with my friends. I also love to learn about other cultures and languages by watching foreign films or attending events like International Coffee Hour.

The craziest thing I’ve done is…

It’s actually something that I am planning to do! I will move to Paris to do an internship at an international public relations firm starting this summer. I don’t know where I’m going to be living yet, but I’ll be working there until the end of the year. I am excited and nervous about moving to such a big, international city on my own!

My favorite place to study is…

…in my room, because I have plenty of space to spread out and it is quiet. I like to listen to soft music on my computer and do my reading and note taking on my bed or at my desk using my computer.

My favorite professor is…

…Carolina Acosta-Alzuru in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication because she is so passionate about what she teaches. She is knowledgeable about so many different subjects, and she really cares about her students. She was my public relations campaigns teacher, and she is currently teaching the honors seminar I am taking about telenovelas and their social and political impact in Latin American countries. She is constantly learning herself, and she has been doing research over the past four years on Venezuelan telenovelas to determine the major social and cultural impacts in the country. She pushes her students to do their very best, and she is always there to help encourage and guide us.

If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with…

…my grandfather, Alfredo Baetti. Mi abuelo (my grandfather) was born in 1900 in the country of Argentina. He was the second doctor in his town and formed the first practice. My grandfather delivered generations of babies in the small town of Galvez, Argentina, and the town’s hospital was named in his honor in the early 1990s. He lived to be 100! I would have loved to been able to talk to him about everything he learned and witnessed throughout his life.

If I knew I could not fail, I would…

…play the guitar, write lyrics and sing in a musical group. I have always loved music and poetry. I used to play the clarinet, but I stopped after the ninth grade. I would love to be able to express myself through writing and music as well.

After graduation, I plan to…

…work at an internship that will incorporate both of my majors: public relations and French. In Paris, I will work at Publicis Consultants, an international public relations and consulting firm. I will be there for about six months and will be working doing internal and corporate communications. Afterwards, I would like to work at a PR agency here in Atlanta. Maybe I will eventually work in the PR department for a sports team. I am also considering going back to get my MBA after a few years of work experience.

The one UGA experience I will always remember will be…

…when the men’s basketball team won the game versus LSU in the final seconds of the match this year. I’ve spent four years doing public relations and promotions for the men’s basketball team. I was so excited to see UGA win against a SEC team that went to the final two in the 2006 NCAA tournament!