Amazing Students Profiles

Matthew Wilson

Matthew Wilson

Senior Matthew Wilson knows that often the gift one receives comes from giving. He was the president of UGA’s Ag Hill Council last year and currently is president of Alternative Spring Break. He is a second year member of The Arch Society, UGA’s official hosts and goodwill ambassadors. Matthew was also recently selected as the student chairperson for the Tate Expansion Committee as they begin to determine what phase II of the Tate Student Center will look like. He says he started thinking about attending UGA while he was still in middle school and participating in 4-H activities. After he graduates, he plans to work in Ecuador, join the Teach for America corps and then attend law school before pursuing a career in politics.


Griffin, Georgia

High School:

Griffin High School

Degree objective:

Bachelor of Science in Agriculture with a major in Agricultural Communications

Expected graduation:

May 2006

University highlights, achievements, awards and scholarships:

This year I will be serving as the Chairman of the Tate Student Center Expansion Advisory Board, Executive Coordinator of UGA’s Alternative Spring Break Program, and student member of the Georgia 4-H Advisory Committee. I will also be serving for a second year on The Arch Society. Most recently, I was the President of Ag Hill Council and Coordinator for UGA Homecoming. Last spring, I was inducted into the Blue Key Honor Society and recognized as a Rotary Top 12 Student.

Current Employment:

I am very fortunate to work with Joe Whorton and Matt Bishop with the UGA Initiative on Poverty and the Economy, an initiative of the Vice President for Public Service and Outreach. The Initiative’s mission is to create sustainable activities across multiple disciplines that are designed to address issues of persistent poverty specific to the working and nonworking poor. I help develop sound scholarly research that will promote public policy designed to improve both individual economic well-being and community prosperity for the state of Georgia and beyond.

I chose to attend UGA because…

…of my involvement with Georgia 4-H growing up. The Georgia 4-H Program is run by UGA’s University of Georgia Cooperative Extension. Because of my 4-H activities, I was very aware of the many opportunities at UGA. Georgia 4-H allowed me to learn all about the programs at UGA and even take a campus tour while still in middle school.

My favorite things to do on campus are…

…first and foremost, cheer the bulldogs on to victory. I love spending Saturdays in the fall with the rest of the bulldog nation, dressed in red and black. I also love catching a movie at the Tate theater, grabbing some coffee from Jittery Joe’s with a friend, and eating lunch downtown.

When I have free time, I like…

…to spend it with my five best friends enjoying all the wonderful things that come with attending the best university in the country!

The craziest thing I’ve done is…

…run for Student Government Association Vice President. Despite not being elected, I found the experience to be very exhilarating and gratifying in the end. There’s nothing like putting it all on the line to fight for what you believe in. Working alongside the most capable running mate there has ever been and a campaign manager with more passion than anyone I’ve ever met, I really learned a lot about the person I want to be and the way in which I hope to spend my life fighting for others.

My favorite place to study is…

…the Law Library. I find the combination of beautiful southern landscaping and the intensity with which law students take their studies to be very relaxing, yet inspiring. Not to mention, it’s just quiet.

My favorite professor is…

…Terrence Centner of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. My sophomore year, I had Dr. Centner for AAEC 4930 – Environmental Law and Government Regulation. Because the class also had graduate students, the material covered was very challenging. Dr. Centner said one of the things he wanted to do was prepare us for law school – and he did – down to his use of the Socratic method. To this day, Dr. Centner’s class has been one of the most challenging, and yet rewarding, classes I’ve taken at UGA.

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

…our 42nd President, William Jefferson Clinton. As someone who wants to one day enter politics, I find his life history, charisma, and accomplishments fascinating. Despite his very public imperfections, I strive to emulate his commitment to public service and global justice.

If I knew I could not fail, I would…

…eliminate societal poverty. From my current employment and experiences with Alternative Spring Break, I have seen the horrid trauma caused by poverty in America and believe there is no greater issue that faces us today.

After graduation, I plan to…

…work on an international agriculture internship in Ecuador. Then I plan to spend two years teaching low-income students in the Mississippi Delta with Teach for America. Afterwards, I plan on attending law school.

The one UGA experience I will always remember will be…

…the three summers I spent as a camp counselor at Rock Eagle 4-H Summer Camp, a part of UGA. I served my final summer as the Sports & Recreation Coordinator. The friends, experiences, and memories I made those three summers were so much fun and I will continue to learn from them. Above all, the chance I was given to make a positive impact in the lives of over 3,000 fifth and sixth-graders was unlike anything I have ever experienced.