The College of Education student ambassadors act as official hosts and representatives of the College. Ambassadors have the opportunity to:
It is important to the senior leadership of the College of Education to make decisions, when appropriate, based on student input and feedback. A unique experience for students, ambassadors are often invited to share their student perspective with the dean's office on important issues and give input for new initiatives for college improvements. Students may contact the ambassadors with an issue or idea.
Contact us if you have questions or are interested in being involved with the student ambassador program. Applications open every January, and interviews take place during the spring.
The application for the 2017-2018 Student Ambassador group will be open on February 1st. Applications will be due on March 1st. If you have further questions about the application process or COE Student Ambassadors please contact Callie Cole.
If you are faculty or staff and it would be helpful for student ambassadors to volunteer for your event, you can submit an online request. Please allow at least one week's notice when requesting student leader volunteers.
Born in Athens, but raised in Woodstock, Georgia, Saba Amirali has always felt a special connection to the Dawgs. She is a second year early childhood education major and a sociology minor. Her passion for teaching was inspired by her amazing second grade teacher, and she can't wait to inspire her students the same way. Saba loves going to concerts, so if you need a pal, she would be more than happy to join you!
Miller Barnett is a third-year undergraduate student from Cartersville, Georgia, who was recently accepted into the social studies education program in the College of Education. In addition to being a student ambassador, he is also a lifeguard, a safety instructor, and the president of the University of Georgia Swim Club.
Brittany Bennett is a master's student studying middle grades education in the department of educational theory and practice. In 2010, she received her bacehlor's degree in child and family development from Georgia Southern University. She has a passion for working with young adolescents and their families, both in the classroom and in their communities. Before attending UGA, Bennett worked for various non-profit organizations, including the YMCA and SeaWorld San Antonio.
Grey Bittinger grew up an only child to a single mother and spent his first two years of college pursuing his father's dream of playing collegiate baseball. Before transferring to UGA in 2014, Grey spent time at Lagrange College and West Georgia before finding his home in Athens. He will graduate in May 2017 and plans to pursue a career in chiropractic care.
Emily Black is a third-year student in the mathematics education program. She is an animal lover and her family own six dogs, four cats, and one turtle. She is also a cat owner herself, and is considered by most a "crazy cat lady." Emily enjoys spending her time watching Netflix, cuddling with her kitten, and enjoying the outdoors at the State Botanical Garden.
Courtney Bolden is a third-year middle grades education student from Winder, Georgia. Courtney is also a resident assistant at ECV and loves her job almost as much as she loves the Dawgs! In her (very limited) free time, she enjoys camping, hiking, kayaking, shopping, and spending time with her family and fluffy cat, Sugar.
Kelsey Brown is a fourth-year communication sciences and disorders and theatre double major from Lexington, Kentucky. She is the social media chair for Children's Theatre Troupe, and she also works with young people at Athens First United Methodist Church. In the future, Kelsey hopes to use her position as a speech-language pathologist to bring theatre programming to young people with communication disorders.
Jana Burchette is the student ambassador president and a first-year graduate student in the sport management and policy program. She graduated from UGA in 2016 with a bachelor's degree in exercise and sport science. Born and raised in Augusta, Georgia, Jana loves traveling, finding new restaurants, and playing with puppies. As an undergrad, she raised a black lab named Vicki for the Guide Dog Foundation. She graduated from detection school last May.
Anahí Cardona-Perez is a second-year Spanish and world language major from Gainesville, Georgia. She is the biggest goofball you'll ever know and a vivid dreamer. During her free time, she enjoys running. In the future, Anahí hopes to share her love for Spanish and its importance with her future students.
Ahra Cho is a junior pursuing a bachelor's degree in English/English education and psychology. No, she does not edit other people's essays for fun, and no, she cannot guess what you are thinking. One day, she hopes to teach English and inspire youths to read entire novels instead of using SparkNotes!
Ellen Chong is a senior majoring in exercise and sport science. She was born in Los Angeles, California, but grew up in Roswell, Georgia. She will attend grad school at Georgia State University for physical therapy in summer 2017, and her dream job is to be a physical therapist at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta. In her free time, Ellen loves dancing, practicing yoga, and making new acai bowl recipes! She loves setting goals and hopes to get certified in yoga within the next three years!
Brianna Davis is a sophomore sport management major from McDonough, Georgia. Her goal is to work for a collegiate or professional football team. Brianna is a committee member of Shop with a Bulldawg and an intern with UGA Hockey. She is also a VIP Gameday Host for the Atlanta Falcons. One thing on Brianna's bucket list is to go to the Summer Olympics and watch beach volleyball and gymnastics.
Originally from Sylvester, Georgia, Alexius Davis is a junior majoring in mathematics education. She enjoys playing tennis, the piano, and helping others. Alexius hopes to be a math teacher and a superintendent one day.
Emily Dutton is a third-year senior from Cumming, Georgia, majoring in communication sciences and disorders. She serves on the leadership board in her sorority, Sigma Alpha Omega and works part-time as an afterschool teacher at Chase Street Elementary School. In her free time, Emily can be found eating Chick-Fil-A nugs and Cali n' Titos fish tacos.
Paige Fierbaugh is a second-year early childhood education major from Peachtree City, Georgia. She loves traveling and spending time outdoors. Some of Paige's favorite things to eat include Your Pie, Chick-Fil-A, and all things chocolate! Her goal is to graduate early and spend time teaching overseas in a third-world country.
Amanda Freeman grew up in Augusta, Georgia. She is pursuing a degree in special education with an emphasis in moderate to profound disabilities and plans on graduating in 2017. She loves her golden doodle more than tacos, and her second home is the beach. Amanda loves babies, especially her niece, and she hopes to meet a clone of Dwight Schrute.
Emily Givens is a fourth-year communication sciences and disorders major from Augusta, Georgia. In the future, she plans to get a master's in speech language pathology. Emily would love to work in a medical setting with stroke patients who have acquired aphasia, since she is interested in improving the quality of life for these patients. In her free time, Emily enjoys running, walking around Five Points, and trying all the different restaurants in Athens!
Ali Godwin is a third-year student from Suwanee, Georgia, currently pursuing a bachelor's and a master's degree in early childhood education. It sounds like she has her life together, but she really doesn't. She hopes to be a kindergarten teacher or a fairy princess, whichever pays better. In her spare time, she enjoys going on runs, crafting, and volunteering through Athens Church.
Megan Greene is a fourth-year student from Kennesaw, Georgia, currently pursuing a dual bachelor's and master's degree in early childhood education and an endorsement in ESOL. She studied abroad in Italy after sophomore year and spent the past summer interning with the D.C. Public Schools Central Office. Megan will graduate in May 2017 and aspires to teach fifth or sixth grade in D.C. This is her second year as an ambassador, and she currently serves on the executive board as secretary.
Tyler Haaland is a third-year student from Knoxville, Tennessee. Ironically, he grew up a Tennessee fan, but has now transformed into a dawgs fan. Tyler is a double major in finance and sport management. He is also a member of Sigma Nu Fraternity.
Brian Heredia is a junior history and social studies education major from the wonderful city of Athens, Georgia. Besides being a student ambassador, Brian tutors elementary school students every week at the Rocksprings Community Center. He also loves to cook and cheer on the Dawgs.
Heather Higuera is a fourth-year early childhood education major from Villa Rica, Georgia. She taught English in Italy as part of a study abroad program and plans to teach abroad in the near future. Her goals after graduation include earning a master's degree and teaching a kindergarten class. She took full advantage of the meal plan and is not afraid to admit she gained the freshman fifteen.
Courteney Hooks is a senior English education major from Powder Springs, Georgia. In her spare time, she enjoys reading in her ENO, drinking coffee, and spending time with friends. Courteney's favorite COE memory is studying abroad in Scotland and getting to learn all about their school system!
Hailing from Atlanta, Falilah Ibidapo is a fourth-year student majoring in early childhood education. In her spare time, she enjoys working with students in the Athens-Clarke County area, as well as discovering hidden food gems around the city. Falilah spent her summer teaching at an urban charter school in New Jersey and has dreams to open a school of her own one day.
Kaylee Jerman is a second-year social studies education major. She loves to travel and has studied abroad in Botswana and South Africa. Kaylee has cage dived with great white sharks and ziplined through the mountains of Cape Town. Her goal after college is to join the Peace Corps and teach history to children in rural Botswana.
Brin Joiner is a senior athletic training and exercise and sport science major from Cairo. She enjoys dancing to Shania Twain and exploring new places. Brin can usually be found having a latte at Jittery Joes or at the dog park playing with her spunky pup, Ridge. Along with being a College of Education ambassador, she is also a member of the Rho Tau-Physical Therapy Club, the social chair for the Sports Medicine Club, a mentor for Shopping with a Bulldawg, and a member of Wesley.
Ansley Jordan is a senior communications sciences and disorders major from Athens, Georgia. Her two favorite things are Chick-fil-A and the dawgs!
Born in Tennessee, Emily Ketelsen is a senior communication sciences and disorders major. While attending high school in Peachtree Corners, Georgia, her passion for helping children grew. She hopes to continue her education and become a speech-language pathologist. Emily is a founding member of UGA's Operation Smile, which raises money for children to receive cleft palate and cleft lip surgeries for free. She hopes to one-day serve as a volunteer speech therapist on their international teams.
Nicole Larson is from Guyton, Georgia, a small town near the southeastern border. She is a third-year student majoring in exercise and sports science with the intention of being a physical therapist. One interesting fact about Nicole is that she is an avid runner, so if you ever see her running around campus, feel free to wave or say "hi."
Brenda Lee is a senior majoring in special education and minoring in human development and family science. She is originally from Los Angeles, California, and plans to move back to attend graduate school in hopes of becoming a speech-language pathologist. Aside from her love for speech pathology, she also adores her two kittens, Latte and Truffle.
Loud and proud, Athens native Michelle Legette is a fourth-year majoring in early childhood education. One day, she wants to become a superintendent. Some of her favorite things are grilled cheese, Disney movies, and ShondaLand.
Kayla Magnus is a third-year early childhood education major from Winterville, Georgia. In case you aren't familiar with how close that is, she was born in St. Mary's on Baxter Street and is still only about 10 minutes away from home. She has been a member of the Redcoat Band since starting her time here at UGA. There's no other place she'd rather spend her Saturdays in the fall than in Sanford Stadium. Look out for her on campus as she might be driving your bus!
Celine Maharaj is a fourth-year student majoring in world language education and Spanish and minoring in French. Her plan after graduation is to pursue post-graduate studies and teach English and Spanish abroad. Celine loves long walks on the beach at sunset. She is extremely passionate about language and literacy education and is excited to begin her career in the field.
Maggie McGinty is from Alpharetta, Georgia. She graduated from Cambridge High School in 2014. Maggie hopes to be a health and physical education teacher when she graduates and to coach high school level swimming. It may sound cliche, but Maggie loves working with children and making people smile.
Mekayla Murphy is a third-year exercise and sports science major from Alpharetta, Georgia. She is currently studying to be a physician's assistant and in addition to serving as a student ambassador, she is also a member of the UGA Georgettes dance line. An interesting fact about Mekayla is that this past summer, she studied abroad in Cortona, Italy.
Sammie Napierala is a third-year early childhood education major from Lawrenceville, Georgia. She transferred to UGA in the fall of last year and has found her college home here in Athens. In her free time, Sammie likes watching Netflix, hanging out with her cohort friends, singing in the car, napping with her cat, crafting, and of course cheering on the Dawgs! Sammie is also a member of Sigma Alpha Omega, and her favorite Athens spots include Ike and Jane, Clocked, and the Botanical Gardens.
Jordan Pitts is a senior middle grades education major from Adel, Georgia. She looks forward to her future as a teacher. Her favorite quote is, "Be somebody who makes everyone feel like somebody." Jordan's interesting talent is that she can recite the alphabet backwards in less than five seconds.
Originally from Acworth, Georgia, Erin Reynolds is a third-year communication sciences and disorders major minoring in Spanish. Erin's perfect career would combine her love of deaf culture with her background in speech-language pathology. In her free time, Erin loves to go outside and she visit North Georgia. In the future, Erin hopes to travel the world and experience all different types of cultures!
Meredith Rhodes is a fourth-year exercise and sports science major from Suwanee, Georgia. In the future, Meredith hopes to pursue her dream of becoming a physical therapist. She is a former UGA cheerleader who still loves cheering on the Dawgs from the stands. She loves helping others and meeting new people to hear about their different life experiences. Meredith also loves little kids and hopes to work with them in physical therapy one day.
Creedence Riblett is a senior exercise and sport science major who transferred to UGA in order to pursue a career in physical therapy. He hails from the alluring mountainous region that is Franklin, North Carolina. He revels in talking about his two cats, riding his bike, getting lost in a great book, and engaging in social activities on and off campus. Always equipped with a smile, Creedence loves to talk about his collegiate journey and to share his experiences with others.
Tequilla Richardson is a fourth-year English education major from Jonesboro, Georgia. Tequilla currently student teaches 9th graders at Madison County High School. Supposedly, Tequilla's left ear is bigger than her right, making it the perfect attribute to hear all of her students.
Kathleen Rigsbee is a junior sports management major from Raleigh, North Carolina. She is an outgoing girl that is always ready to meet someone new! Kathleen loves sports and chatting with people. Up until 6th grade, Kathleen had attended all of Duke's basketball games. In the future, she hopes to work for the Panthers.
Nicole Riley is a returning ambassador and a senior mathematics education major from Lawrenceville, Georgia. She hopes to teach either middle or high school math. She has been studying American Sign Language for the past two years and hopes to incorporate that into her future classroom as well. She is also heavily involved in other organizations on campus, including Greek life, UGA HEROs, and Relay for Life. In her free time, Nicole enjoys spending time with friends and spoiling her family dog, Saké.
Maát Ross is a third-year English education major. This is her first year as a student ambassador and she is a second-year mentor with the Clarke County Mentoring Program. She attended high school in Atlanta, and after she graduates, she wants to give back to her community by opening her own private school in Atlanta. Maát's parents raised her to live by the quote, "This too shall pass," because she knows that no matter how tough things get, she can accomplish he goals by staying strong and positive.
Cassie Russell is a senior majoring in communication sciences and disorders. She grew up in Nassau, Bahamas and transferred to UGA during her sophomore year. She plans to become a speech-language pathologist one day. In her free time, she enjoys exploring the different cities in Georgia.
Sherry Sayavongsa is a fourth-year communication sciences and disorders major from Suwanee, Georgia. She enjoys volunteering at Athens Regional Medical Center and Butterfly Dreams Farm, as well as being a part of the UGA NSSLHA organization. Attending UGA for the past four years has made Sherry fall in love with Athens. Her favorite things to do around town are attending concerts at the Georgia Theatre and visiting the botanical gardens. If she ever needs a pick-me-up, Insomnia Cookies are the way to go!
Daniel Schoon is a fourth-year mathematics/mathematics education major from Tyrone, Georgia. In his spare time, he tries to dominate UGA intramural sports, but he actually peaked in high school. He also loves competitive bird watching and ice skating. His dream is to win Dancing with the Stars, because that would mean he became famous enough to be considered for the show. If he had a million dollars, he would probably spend a good chunk of it on Chick-fil- A deluxe sandwiches and Polynesian sauce.
Darby Smith grew up in the Pacific Northwest, but now calls Athens home. A 2015 graduate of the University of Oregon, she loves the Dawgs, but loves the Ducks more. Darby is pursuing a master's degree in middle grades education, and next year, she hopes to be a language arts teacher and inspire a passion for reading in every student she encounters. She enjoys drinking copious amounts of coffee, listening to the Hamilton soundtrack, reading mystery novels, and hanging out with middle schoolers.
Yemi Solomon is a fourth-year early childhood education major from Snellville, Georgia. She's passionate about working with children from inner city schools and aspires to continue working with them after graduation as an elementary school teacher. If you ever need a pick-me-up, Yemi makes the best cookie brownies!
Mason Spratling is a senior exercise and sports science major from Augusta, Georgia. His plan after graduation is to attend a physical therapy school and later become a physical therapist. Mason enjoys participating in many different sports and also loves hunting and fishing. He has an identical twin brother.
Originally from Suwanee, Georgia, Natalie Stout is a sophomore special education major focused on adapted curriculum. Her goal is to be a high school special education teacher. She is a member of the Kappa Delta sorority and has been to Disney World over 20 times.
Olivia Taylor is a third-year exercise and sport science student from Chattanooga, Tennessee. She is an aspiring physician assistant who hopes to one day work in pediatrics. Olivia loves community service and is the vice president of Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society where she plans monthly service projects for the organization. In her free time, she can be found drinking coffee, crafting, or shopping at Target.
Mary Terry is a sophomore health and physical education major from Oconee, Georgia. She hopes to get her master's degree after graduation and become a high school counselor and track and field coach. She grew up around Athens her whole life, so obviously she loves the Dawgs! Mary is obsessed with macaroni and cheese and cosmic brownies. Also Zach Galifianakis is her soul mate.
Meredith Towey is a senior communication sciences and disorders major from Atlanta. She can talk to animals!
Alex Van Dyke is a first generation college student from Albany, Georgia majoring in sport management. Interestingly, one of Alex's legs is longer than the other, which made her six foot frame awkward in basketball and volleyball. However, through sport management, she is able to fulfill a lifelong void of not being an athlete. She works as a game-day ambassador with Georgia Hospitality and promotes gender equity in the sport and entertainment industry.
Originally from Snellville, Georgia, Abbe Van Gorder is delighted to be a junior pursuing a double major in political science and social studies education. She hopes to find an administrative position in state or local government before entering the classroom. Abbe wants to be a teacher with practical experience who is able to relate educational activities to real-life situations. She has tutored at Pinewoods Library and is currently a mentor at Clarke Middle School. This semester, she began a fellowship with Georgia House Representative, Spencer Frye.
Natalie Varkey's family is originally from Kerala, India, but she was born in New York. When she was young, her family moved to Snellville, Georgia, and she has lived there ever since. Natalie is a fourth-year history and social studies education major. She student teaches at Cedar Shoals High School in an 11th grade U.S. history class. Natalie loves watching television and baking desserts, and you can usually find her in the Main Library.
Garrett Walker is a fourth-year student, but still has another year because of his second major. He is from Madison County, but has lived in Athens since he was 18. His main goal in life is to become a college professor, but he also wants to be a high school teacher or counselor. Another goal of his is to travel the world and visit as many countries as possible. He has already traveled to Israel, Russia, Sweden, Finland, Germany, and Estonia.
Molly Warendh is a sophomore communication sciences and disorders major from Forsyth, Georgia. She hopes to one day pursue a Ph.D. in audiology and open her own practice. In her free time, Molly loves volunteering, drinking too much coffee, and cheering between the hedges. Go Dawgs!
Ray Waters is a senior exercise and sports science major from Augusta, Georgia. He started his college career at the University of North Georgia in Gainesville. His number one love is sports and exercising, and he grew up playing tennis, baseball, and golf. Upon transferring to UGA, Ray decided to join the UGA Rowing team where he found his passion for team-based sports. He enjoys live music, art, and reading. After graduating Ray plans on applying to physical therapy school where he can live out his dream of helping people move pain free!
Megan Wemyss is a fourth-year student pursuing a dual bachelor's and master's degree in early childhood education, as well as a reading education endorsement. She has student taught at three different Clarke County schools and loves the kids of Athens! Originally from Johns Creek, Georgia, Megan is a huge fantasy (and real-life) football fan!
Tracy Wong is a third-year student from Johns Creek, Georgia, studying communication sciences and disorders. In the future, she is excited to help people with communication disabilities as a speech-language pathologist. Tracy loves reading, writing, and exploring new places.
Jonathan Wood is a fourth-year senior majoring in sport management. This past year, he interned with the Savannah Bananas. After graduation, Jonathan plans to work for the Bananas! His favorite thing about UGA has to be the variety of opportunities offered for every possible major.