Name: Sydney Peoples
Year: Class of 2020
Major: Commerce (Marketing Concentration, Data Analytics Track) and French
Hometown: Princeton, New Jersey
Why you chose UVA: My dad went to UVA (College of Arts and Sciences ’89) so I practically grew up on Grounds. But, pretty much from day one, I decided that I didn’t want to go to UVA for that very reason. Eventually, though, during my junior year of high school, I started looking at colleges more seriously and realized that UVA was actually a school that I was interested in. And, the rest is history!!
Involvement at UVA: Outreach Student Advisory Committee, University Programs Council Marketing PR & Social Coordinator, Teaching Assistant for COMM 2000 (reach out to me with questions about the Commerce School!!)
What’s something you wish you had known during the college application/decision process? I was never too worried about the college application process. I’m a pretty firm believer in things working out in the end, so I try to – for the most part – just trust the process. I wanted to go to UVA and so I did my best to create a strong application, while still being myself. I never felt the need to ‘boost’ my resume by signing up for classes that I thought admissions officers would want to see. If anything, maybe I wish I knew a little bit more about the financial aid process, because that is still completely foreign to me.
Thoughts/feelings about diversity at UVA: As far as diversity at UVA, I think it’s a bit of, “you get what you sign up for.” I’ve known that UVA was a predominately white institution my whole life and, especially since it’s a public university, I knew that the demographics of students would reflect the overall population of America, which is mostly white. That is all changing though, as more and more people of color are joining the University community, and the overall population is skewing more diverse than in the past. I think that there is always more that can be done – but I also think that is due to the larger societal issues around diversity in the United States. Overall, I think diversity is a tricky area for the school because it is a public institution, but, especially after everything that has happened in the past two years, I think it is important and necessary for the school to continue to work towards a more inclusive and diverse landscape for all students.
Advice for incoming students? I would say be yourself and say “hi” to someone before they say “hi” to you. I am inherently shy by nature and talking to new people has never been something I’ve been comfortable with. I wish that I would have talked to more people and taken the initiative into my own hands, instead of waiting for other people to take that leap for me. I also think that sometimes people will recognize you, but worry that you might not remember the conversation you had with them the other day, so if you make it a point to reach out to them, instead of waiting for it to go the other way around you will be surprised at how many people take notice and reach out to you going forward.
Bodos order: Unpopular opinion, but I do NOT like Bodo’s. I’ll blame it on the New Jersey in me, but I really never understood the hype. The ‘Parisian’ sandwich at Corner Juice is amazing though! 10/10 recommend!
Sydney Peoples, McIntire School of Commerce, Class of 2020, email@example.com