Amazing Students Profiles

George Pate

George Pate

It was the reputation of the theater department faculty that drew Ph.D. student George Pate to UGA, and he has used the resources of the department wisely to hone his skills as a playwright and actor.


Spartanburg, S.C.

High School:

Dorman High School

Degree objective:

Ph.D. in theater and performance studies

Other degrees:

B.A. English — University of South Carolina
M.A. English — University of Tennessee

Expected graduation:

Spring 2014

University highlights, achievements, awards and scholarships:

I had an article published in the May issue of Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism. During my first two years at UGA, I helped build a relationship between the theater department and the GRU/UGA Medical Partnership as part of an effort to create a program to train acting students and volunteers as simulated patients for training and assessment encounters with the medical students.

One of my plays recently received a staged reading with The Barrow Group in New York City. Even more recently, UGA’s Thalian-Blackfriars produced my play “Feeble Eyes.” With John Bray, lecturer in dramatic writing in the Department of Theatre and Film Studies, I co-moderate the Athens Playwrights’ Workshop. Before arriving at UGA, I won the Tennessee Williams National One-Act Play Contest.

Current Employment:

Graduate teaching assistant

Family Ties to UGA:

None. In fact, I grew up being taught to pull against Georgia. My grandfather went to Georgia Tech, and every other member of my immediate family and most of my extended family attended Clemson. But I know better now.

I chose to attend UGA because…

I really wanted to work with the faculty here, especially David Saltz and Marla Carlson. My adviser at the University of Tennessee encouraged me to apply to Georgia because of them.

My favorite things to do on campus are…

… just walking around North Campus. It’s so nice, and there are so many little hidden beautiful spots.

When I have free time, I like…

Ah, I remember free time. I’m a bit of a gamer, and I also love to go trout fishing up near Clayton, Ga., if I take a weekend off from the dissertation.

The craziest thing I’ve done is…

… move to Chicago after undergrad with no job, no plan and without ever setting foot in the city until the day I moved into my room under the stairs. It’s also one of the best things I ever did.

My favorite place to study is…

… the third floor of the library at the tables by the window.

My favorite professor is…

It’s impossible to choose between Dr. Saltz and Dr. Carlson. Each of them has helped me out so much in so many ways, and I find their different styles of mentorship to be complementary.

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

… Martin McDonagh. He’s one of the best living playwrights and one of the most exciting filmmakers around.

If I knew I could not fail, I would…

… write more plays.

If money was not a consideration, I would love to…

… travel more. I still haven’t made it to Spain, Morocco, Scandinavia and several dozen other places I’ve always wanted to see.

After graduation, I plan to…

… get married, first. I met my fiancee at UGA, and we’re getting married almost immediately after graduation. Then, with any luck, I’ll pursue a career in the academy.

The one UGA experience I will always remember will be…

It’s not necessarily a single experience, but I’ll always remember how impressed I was and continue to be with the amount and quality of student-produced work beyond the main theater season at UGA. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a department more filled with such ambitious, motivated and dedicated students. And I’ve really enjoyed helping Dr. Bray build up the Athens Playwrights’ Workshop, which has been so energetic and supportive.