Alexeia Garnett, who recently graduated with a B.S. in health promotion, credits her switch from a pre-med to a public health degree track for reigniting her passion for service and setting her on a new career path in health administration.
Bachelor of Science in Health Promotion (BSHP), Health Policy and Management Minor
What attracted you to a degree in public health?
Because I was initially interested in Pediatrics, most of my volunteer work has included coaching dance and step to young children. In Athens, I became the step team coach for Clarke Central High School and taught dance at the Boys and Girls Club. As a mentor and coach, I became privy to the various health disparities that troubled my students. Up to that point, I had spent three years matriculating on the pre-med track as an undergrad. I felt that I would be better able to fully advocate for those impacted by these disparities on the public health track.
What do you consider to be the highlight of your time at the College?
I think the highlight of my time in College was switching my major to Health Promotion and Behavior because I was introduced to so many opportunities that enhanced my experience as a student. When I was pre-med, I was not happy with the classes I was taking, nor were the shadowing and internship experiences exciting to me. Even though switching added an extra year, I was the happiest and most successful I had ever been in college, and thankful to have endeavored myself in something I am passionate about.
Do you have any volunteer experiences that were especially meaningful?
I really appreciated my volunteer experience with Clarke Central High School and the Boys and Girls Club because it became the driving force for pursuing public health. I also appreciate volunteering with Athens Heart Center because I experienced, firsthand, how life will be overseeing hospital or medical office operations.
Where did you pursue your internship? What have you learned from the internship?
I pursued an internship with Project Safe because I have a strong opposition to domestic violence and interning with Project Safe is one of few ways that I could provide resources to individuals affected by its unwarranted complexities. Throughout my internship, I was able to gain experience and skills in managing relationships with partners and stakeholders, managing human resources, graphic design, running and creating quarterly reports, and influencing policies and systems change within the organization. This internship provided me with the knowledge, skills, and confidence to continue my pursuit of a Health Administration career.
What activities/achievements/awards during your time here are you most proud of?
I am proud to have served the Athens-Clarke County community through Campus Kitchen for most of my time at UGA. The impact Campus Kitchen has had on mitigating food insecurity in Athens is amazing and I am proud to have been a part of that. I am also proud of the research I conducted in 2019 as a CURO Research Assistant. Working with Dr. Patrick O’Connor from the Department of Kinesiology in the College of Education, I studied the psychophysiological effects of yoga.
Do you have any external activities that you are passionate about? Are there other unique things you can share about yourself?
I am passionate about dance. I have been dancing since I was 3 years old and feel as though dance has kept me healthy while in school. Here at UGA, I danced with the Pamoja Dance Company and the Georgia Dolls Dance Team, and hopefully, there are opportunities for me to dance in graduate school.
Also, over the past year I’ve been able to focus on building my business, Lexx Janelle’s Tasty Sweets, working on new recipes, marketing strategies, and establishing my business as a Limited Liability Company.
What are your plans after graduation?
I was recently accepted into Georgia State University’s Robinson College of Business for their dual Master of Health Administration and Master of Business Administration degree program starting in Fall 2021. My internship with Project Safe has prepared me well to continue moving forward.
Posted on May 26, 2021.