March 22, 2015
As a President’s Fulfilling the Dream Award winner, Charles King, a senior majoring in middle school education, will leave a big mark on UGA and Athens when he graduates. He plans to spread his knowledge with Teach for America.
B.S. in education
University highlights, achievements and awards:
—2015 President’s Fulfilling the Dream Award
—2014-2015 Black Faculty and Staff Organization Founder’s Award
—Del Jones Memorial College of Education Scholarship
I am currently the president of the Black Male Leadership Society, an organization I helped to revive after years of dormancy on campus. I’ve worked with faculty, staff and Athens community leaders to create an organization that embraces UGA’s black undergraduate and graduate students while setting them up for success in their academic, social, personal and professional lives.
Key accomplishments under my leadership include a candlelight vigil in response to the Mike Brown shooting, a record number of members inducted at the group’s first formal pinning ceremony, the annual BMLS fall retreat, a “Know Your Rights” forum hosted by BMLS with UGA professors and Athens-Clarke County Police Department and legal advisers, and ongoing community service with Athens-Clarke County’s Youth Academy.
I also work as a campus campaign coordinator with Teach for America.
I have been an active student leader and supporter and sit on the advisory board for the Georgia African American Male Experience, a residential weekend program created to increase the enrollment of African-American males at UGA.
Additionally, within the community, I have worked in Athens elementary and middle school classrooms. I am currently spending each day this spring semester teaching eighth-grade English to students at Hilsman Middle School.
Full-time student: Teacher-candidate at Hilsman Middle School, Athens
Teach for America, Metro Atlanta 2015 Corps member
Family Ties to UGA:
I am a first generation Bulldog. Since attending UGA and joining the Bulldog Nation, my family and friends have become my biggest supporters!
I chose to attend UGA because...
I chose to attend UGA because it provided a vastly different environment from the smaller liberal arts institutions I was accustomed to. The academic rigor, diversity in population and Bulldog pride were all winning factors.
My favorite things to do on campus are...
My favorite things to do on campus are spend time with friends, mentors and advisers. There’s so much that I take away and learn from the people that I associate with. Whether it’s talking over coffee in Jittery Joe’s or having a three-hour conversation about life on the North Campus lawn, I enjoy spending time with and getting to know others.
When I have free time, I like...
When I have free time, I am usually with friends relaxing, laughing and probably singing. The alternative to that is watching Netflix or Beyoncé concerts on YouTube.
The craziest thing I've done is...
The craziest (yet most rewarding) experience I’ve had is living on campus at my high school, Darlington School, where I was a boarding student. I love dispelling the rumors so here we go: 1. Yes, my parents love me. 2. No, I was not a bad child and thus was sent away. 3. It was not a military school. 4. It was not like “Zoey 101.” 5. So yes, one can say it was college four years early. 6. Yes, it was some of the greatest years of my life!
My favorite place to study is...
… either in the Reading Room of the MLC or at home, in bed. Wherever I am, it has to be completely quiet to get work done.
My favorite professor is...
… Gayle Andrews and Kathy Thompson of the College of Education. They’ve played such integral roles in preparing me for a future in education since the start of my two-year journey in the middle school education program.
If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with...
… the late Maya Angelou. There is something special about the wisdom that our elders, like Maya Angelou, obtained and shared with the world because of her experiences. I truly believe that today, we stand on the shoulders of those who have come before us. We stand on the shoulders of giants.
If I knew I could not fail, I would...
… ensure that every child, every family and every community was provided a quality education and that the members of those communities worked to develop and grow themselves, their families and their communities to bigger and better things.
If money was not a consideration, I would love to...
… travel the world. I find the world, and its diversity in people, cultures, environments and so forth, very intriguing. I would love to travel and experience new things.
After graduation, I plan to...
… join the Teach for America 2015 Corps, where I’ll teach middle school English and social studies in metro Atlanta. It is my ultimate aspiration to open a KIPP (Knowledge Is Power Program) school of my own, serving students in low-income communities.
The one UGA experience I will always remember will be...
… the family I’ve met and grown to love throughout my four years here. From freshman year family dinners in the many dining halls to screaming at the top of our lungs at the UGA-LSU football game, or starting an organization and watching it grow in a two-year span, I’m fortunate to have students, faculty, staff and advisers who I can call family.