Through an internship in Washington, D.C., Patrick Nicholson discovered what he wanted to do with his life: improve the efficiency of our federal government. And as an intern with Undergraduate Admissions, he’s had the chance to make a “huge impact” on future students.
Xaverian Brothers High School
Bachelor of the Arts in Management Information Systems
Bachelor of the Arts in Management
Minor in Political Science
Beckham Workforce Diversity Certificate
University highlights, achievements, awards and scholarships:
During my time here at the University of Georgia, I have been extremely lucky to participate in a wide variety of internships and activities on campus. During my sophomore year, I participated in the Washington Semester Program where I lived, learned and interned in Washington, D.C. While in D.C., I interned in the Office of Government Relations for the University of Georgia as the federal relations intern. While interning, I was able to work on a wide variety of projects such as the UGA Fiscal Year 2017 Appropriation Requests and a proposal for an alumni advocacy program here at UGA. However, my favorite aspect of my time in the office was being exposed to all the tremendous research studies the faculty members are conducting. For example, I had the privilege of leading Dr. Gary Grossman of the Warnell School of Forestry around the Capitol for his congressional testimony. During that time, I was able to learn about his research, which was completely outside the realm of my business-focused major.
More recently, I have had the absolute pleasure of interning in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. As an intern, I have been able to assist in planning numerous events such as the annual High School Advisory Council meeting, which brings counselors from all over the country to UGA for three days. However, my favorite aspect of this internship has been interacting with high school students. It is incredible that a simple “day in the office” for me can be an interaction that makes a huge impact on a student’s life. The ability to have these interactions, both positive and negative, is a skill that I know will help in my future business career.
Although my past internships have truly been highlights of my college career, I would be lying if I said my biggest university highlight was not a little dog named Jack. For the past four months, I have been training Jack as a part of the Guide Dog Foundation for the Blind, an organization on campus that is dedicated to providing seeing eye dogs for those who are visually impaired. In total, there are more than 80 future service dogs and over 220 student volunteers involved with the Athens chapter of the organization. This experience of raising Jack has not only provided me with a tremendous opportunity to give back to the community, but has also really helped me grow as a person. I remember the night I got Jack and thinking, “Wow, I am now fully responsible this little guy.” Since then, it has been incredible to see him progress in his training, from a little puppy to a confident future service dog.
University of Georgia Presidential Leadership Scholarship
University of Georgia Department of Management Information Systems Scholarship
University of Georgia Office of Undergraduate Admissions Intern
EY Government and Public Sector Advisory Summer Intern
Family Ties to UGA:
Although my brother and sister both attended universities in the South, I was the first one in my immediate family to attend UGA. However, my brother’s fiancé did attend UGA, so there was one person rooting for me to become a Bulldog.
I chose to attend UGA because…
… it hit all the checkmarks on my list. The University of Georgia has the stellar academics I was looking for in a college, along with a beautiful campus nestled in a one-of-a-kind college town. For me, I was also definitely looking for a larger school with name recognition, and UGA brought that. To this day, I still think it is one of the neatest things to be halfway around the world and to have someone recognize the Georgia “G” on my shirt.
My favorite things to do on campus are…
Honestly, I love giving the prospective student presentations at the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. It is an honor to be able to share what UGA has to offer to the many prospective students and to have an impact on their college decision. The groups are always excited and energized to be on campus, which is always refreshing to see.
When I am not at the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, I love walking around North Campus with Jack and making sure he is progressing in his training. It has been incredible to see him grow from a little puppy to a very well-behaved future service dog.
When I have free time, I like…
In the fall, there is nothing I like more than being in Sanford Stadium. To be surrounded by 93,000 other Bulldog fans is like nothing else in the world.
I also really enjoy reading. Throughout the past year, I have started to make my way through the books I was required to read in high school to see if my perspective on them has changed in the past four years.
The craziest thing I've done is…
The craziest thing I’ve done is apply for the Washington Semester Program during my freshman year. I remember seeing the flyer for the program in Brumby Hall and thinking that it would be an amazing opportunity. After going through the interview process in a suit that was thrown together with various pieces of clothing that different people on my floor had, I was selected to be a participant in the program. Looking back, that crazy decision completely altered my college career and what I hope to be doing in the future.
My favorite place to study is…
… the third floor reading room in the main library. The room is always really quiet and the view that it provides of North Campus is one of the neatest on campus. Also, the chairs are extremely comfy.
My favorite professor is…
This is an extremely difficult one because I have had so many amazing professors throughout my college career. However, two immediately come to mind.
The first is Dr. Amrit Tiwana who is currently my professor in Project Management. He is someone who constantly shows his love for his job and truly has enthusiasm for the material we are covering in class. It is also incredible to be able to be taught by someone who is at the forefront of MIS research. However, I think the thing that sets him apart for me is his pride, enthusiasm and passion that he shows for the MIS program. It truly gives me confidence that the MIS program here at the University of Georgia will continue to be one of the most respected in the country with people like him leading it.
The second teacher that comes to my mind is Randy Nuckolls. Mr. Nuckolls is a partner at Dentons in Washington, D.C., and he was my teacher for my Politics in an Election Year class during my time in the Washington Semester Program. Throughout my time in his class, it was incredible to hear about his personal experiences from his time working in our nation’s capital and the decisions he was a part of. Also in the class, he challenged us to form our beliefs, and to be able to defend them in a civilized way. It is safe to say that the experiences I had in Mr. Nuckolls’ class and the skills he required us to learn are something that will stick with me for the rest of my life.
If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with…
… Mike Allen. While in D.C., I had the pleasure of going to many events moderated by Mr. Allen, who at the time was Politico’s chief political reporter. For me, he is someone to admire because he is not only at the forefront of politics and technology, but also someone who always seems to be lighthearted, no matter how serious the topic being discussed. For me, that delicate balance between seriousness and lightheartedness is something I hope to emulate in my future career. I would also love to discuss his thought process behind leaving one of the top jobs in D.C. to start his own company.
If I knew I could not fail, I would…
… form a tech company startup. As seen in the recent blockbuster IPOs of companies such as Snap Inc., tech startups are some of the fastest growing companies in the country. Personally, I would love to blend together technology and government in a way that makes the way people interact with government easier.
If money was not a consideration, I would love to…
… take a road trip with my grandma through the southwest portion of the United States. Growing up, she was the one who instilled in me a love of history, and it would be an incredible opportunity to explore that history-rich part of the country with her.
What is your passion and how are you committed to pursuing it?
For me, my passion is really to use the skills I have learned here at the University of Georgia to improve the efficiency of our government by leveraging technology and the risks that come along with it. During my time interning in the Office of Government Relations, I really saw how inefficient our government is in many areas, and I decided I wanted to dedicate my career to improving these areas. My upcoming internship with EY Advisory in its Government and Public sector will hopefully provide me with a launching point to start making that impact.
After graduation, I plan to…
… move back to Washington, D.C., to continue with my passion of improving the efficiency of our federal government.
The one UGA experience I will always remember will be…
… my first visit to campus. My dad and I were touring many college campuses and we were on the waitlist to be on the Visitors Center tour here at UGA. I remember my dad and I were nervous that we would not be able to get on the tour and we would miss our brief opportunity to tour campus. However, after overhearing the situation, two alumni offered that if there was not room on the tour, they would gladly give up their seats so that “a kid from up north” would not miss his chance to see UGA. In the end, the Visitors Center was able to make sure everyone was able to get on the tour, however, that moment really stuck out to me. It has also come to really define the University of Georgia and the people that make it up. In that moment, I realized that UGA was not only an incredible academic institution, but a place that I could truly see myself calling home, due to the people that define it.