Students and Alumni
Why Higher Education and Student Affairs at the University of South Carolina? Hear
from our current students and alumni on what makes the HESA program so special. To
contact one of our current students with questions, please click on their names to
send an email.
Julia H. Ballou
Hometown: Mount Pleasant, SC
Current Track: Student Affairs Administration
Current Employment: Graduate Assistant for Preston Residential College
Leadership Role: SPA Director of Prospective Student Engagement
Email me if you have any questions about HESA or SPA!
Bio: I am an alumna of USC Columbia where I earned my BA in studio art. I realized my
passion for higher education through my involvement beyond the classroom in peer leader
positions across campus- I strive to make an impact on the lives of the students around
me and help each and every person find their place at USC. Some of my biggest interests
in higher education are in integrative and experiential learning, High Impact Practices,
and the neurodivergent student experience.
I am thankful for the opportunities I have had in the HESA program which have furthered
my joy for teaching, supporting students, and collaborating with others around me
to create an engaging undergraduate experience for our students. I appreciate the
opportunity to apply what I learn in the classroom to my everyday work and practicum
experiences. We also have an incredible network of support across our campus and other
campuses, allowing for our students to gain experiences in a variety of functional
areas and universities.
Hometown: Noblesville, Indiana
Current track: Student Affairs Administration
Current employment: GA for the Graduate Assistant Recruitment Program (GARP), Career Center
Reach out if you have any questions about the Graduate Assistant Recruitment Program!
Bio: After discovering my passion for student affairs as an undergraduate student at Appalachian
State University, I knew I wanted to pursue a career in the field. When looking at
graduate programs, USC and the HESA program quickly became my dream school and program.
The HESA program's strong reputation, the variety of graduate assistantships available,
and the unique opportunities to learn from the country's top-ranked First-Year Experience
programs solidified my choice to become a Gamecock.
From the moment I visited campus for the GARP Visit Weekend, I felt confident this
was a place where I would be supported and challenged in new and exciting ways through
my coursework and graduate assistantship. I know that the relationships and connections
I have made with my peers, HESA faculty, and USC professional staff during my time
in the HESA program will stay with me throughout my career in higher education.
Hometown: Irmo, SC
Current track: Higher Education Administration
Current Employment: Coordinator of Operations and Equipment for the Carolina Baseball program
Bio: Higher Education is truly a field of work and study that has a lasting impact on the
future of our society. Being able to be part of HESA provides a great platform for
me to grow as a student and a professional as I gain perspectives from our professors
and my peers! As an alumnus of the University of South Carolina for my undergraduate
degree, it is awesome to see first-hand the great work our program does for the institution
as a whole through graduate assistantships and taking action to create a positive
impact. To be surrounded by such a passionate group of professors and peers in the
classroom is great!
Through my studies in HESA, it has been extremely beneficial to learn the topics that
influence higher education. Having the opportunity to learn the ways in which a university
runs through curriculum and real experiences is simply unmatched. The HESA program
is a great avenue to take when looking to study the higher education setting!
Sara Furr, Ph.D.
Graduating year: 2004
Current Position: Dean of Students, Diversity, & Inclusion, School of Social Service
Administration at the University of Chicago
The HESA program gave me a strong foundation of putting theory to practice that has
informed my entire professional career. Additionally, I’m thankful for the personal
and professional relationships I made that created a strong network in the field.
It is not uncommon to meet Carolina HESA alum at every institution I visit.
Patricia A. Whitely, Ph.D.
Graduating year: 1982
Current Position: Vice President for Student Affairs at the University of Miami
I received a terrific background at USC/HESA. The academic work and the assistantships
built a solid foundation for my Student Affairs career. I could not have asked for
a better experience.
Caleb E. Morris
Graduating year: 2019
Current position: Exploratory Advisor and Instructor (UNIV 101 and UNIV 401) at the
University of South Carolina
The University of South Carolina is committed to providing a holistic, engaging, and
purposeful experience for students, both within and beyond the classroom. In addition
to #1 ranked academic programs such as International Business and University 101,
USC is a frontrunner in experiential learning, through innovative programs such as
Graduation with Leadership Distinction (GLD) and My USC Experience. In HESA, I was
able to get first-hand experience with many of these nationally recognized initiatives
through internships and practica, which greatly enhanced my employability, and gave
me many stories to share in interviews. USC is a fine institution, and HESA is a fantastic
program, and I am so thankful to count myself among the expansive network of Gamecock
alumni. Go Cocks!