Division of Student Affairs

Graduation Profiles: Olivia Tarpley

Posted on Tuesday, May 12th, 2020 by Jolie Helton under Inside Student Affairs, Spartan Story. Tags:

Olivia Tarpley is a May 2020 graduate, earning her undergraduate degrees with a double major in History and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and a minor in Anthropology. The Reidsville, NC native will leave UNCG with a co-curricular transcript including serving as SGA Vice President, a Spartan Orientation Staff member, EUC Facility Manager, Peer Academic Leader, Speaking Center Communication Consultant, and a member of the Golden Chain Honor Society and Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society. She was a 2019 – 2020 Spartan of Promise, an award bestowed by the Alumni Association to seniors who have demonstrated exceptional academic and service accomplishments.

I chose to attend UNCG because…

I felt the most comfortable during the campus tour and could see myself making a home at UNCG.

My favorite things to do on campus are…

… getting Tate Street Coffee during breaks in my schedule, running into friends in the EUC, eating lunch with mentors and peers, campus events like I-Fest.

My favorite place to study is…

… Club Jackson (the Library!) I can easily access additional resources and focus on whatever I’m studying!

My favorite professor is…

… every professor I had for my Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies classes! They were all so kind and understanding, they genuinely cared that we were engaged in course material and made adjustments if something wasn’t working for us.

If I knew I could not fail, I would…

Enact free tuition nationwide.

What is your passion, and how are you committed to pursuing it?

My passion centers around being in community with others and learning more about the world around me and how I can make a positive impact. I’m committed to pursuing this by furthering my education through a masters program in Washington, D.C.

The one UNCG experience I will always remember will be…

Late night Senate meetings, working to serve students with my peers.

Are there particular Division of Student Affairs offices that have made a significant impact on your time here?

CAP and the EUC!! I loved working with Meredith, William, and Kathleen as SGA VP and as a Facility Manager. All three of these wonderful humans cheered me on, supported me, and believed in me each step of the way.

What does student leader mean to you?

It means following through on the commitments you make to your peers and your organization, collaboratively working with others to tackle problems, and being aware of how your leadership might have an impact in a space, whether positive or negative.

How do you think your campus involvement and student leadership experience has prepared you for life after UNCG?

My campus involvement and student leadership have helped me grow into who I am and to be comfortable applying my strengths for the betterment of the whole.

How would you describe UNCG to a prospective student?

UNCG is the best place to discover who you are. The people have a genuine interest in your success and want to help you reach your goals.

In what ways have you experienced UNCG’s Culture of Care?

I have experiences the Culture of Care in so many ways over my time at UNCG. A recent example is in the the fall of 2019, during the first semester of my senior year, I was really struggling with determining what I wanted to do after graduation. One of my mentors, Coretta Walker, was supportive and helpful as I tried to sort out what graduate programs I was interested in and how my passions fit with those programs. I couldn’t have arrived at my final decision related to graduate school without Coretta.

As your look back on your time at UNCG, what advice would you give to an incoming freshman?

Say “yes” to the opportunities that you’ll have to learn and grow. Whether you’re participating in research, running for president of your student organization, or exploring an unlikely friendship, your time at UNCG is the time to figure out more about who you truly are and what you’re interested in. It might be easy to hang out in your residence hall for days on end, but life outside keeps happening, and you don’t want to miss that.