Gracie Cherrey is a junior on the UGA Gymnastics Team. She is currently studying Marketing and had the opportunity to participate in an internship with Cushman and Wakefield during the summer of 2017.
The University of Georgia has provided me with more than I could ever put into words. When I committed to the University on an athletic scholarship, I was oblivious to the many opportunities that would be available to me off the competitive floor. It is for these opportunities that I am eternally grateful. I will leave UGA as so much more than just a gymnast.
My time at UGA has not been all gold and glory. I have suffered from injury and had to alter my goals in drastic ways as a result. Physical limitations prevent me from being the collegiate athlete I had envisioned and dreamt of myself to be, but the athletic association continues to support and encourage me in both athletics and academics, helping me to see that there is life beyond sport, while also maximizing the contributions I can make athletically.
This summer played a huge role in helping me see that I can excel in areas other than just gymnastics. I was fortunate enough to solidify an internship position in Atlanta with a commercial real estate company by the name of Cushman and Wakefield. I was absolutely ecstatic to jumpstart my career and progress in another area of my life, while also being able to rehab here on campus. My coaches and the sports medicine staff were entirely supportive and extremely accommodating of my schedule, giving me the best of both worlds.
Through word of mouth of other student-athletes I became better familiarized with The Georgia Way and the opportunities and resources it provides for student-athletes. Not only are there excellent networks of employers and connections that can be utilized, there are also grants available to promote and accommodate working. Though I had already created my resumé and solidified a position, I was able to earn a leadership grant through The Georgia Way that helped make my transition into the professional world smoother, covering the gas required for my commute and also paying for a few pieces of business attire.
UGAA really does go above and beyond for their athletes, and the leadership grant was just one of the many examples of how they do that.
Leigh is a great resource for all student athletes and welcomes everyone with open arms. I highly recommend utilizing these resources–I continue to use them and am thrilled to have the opportunity to further develop myself academically, athletically and professionally.
Thank you UGA Athletic Association for committing to us as student athletes-whatever it takes.