Uga X, the mascot for the University of Georgia, during the game at Sanford Stadium in Athens. (Hyosub Shin /

AJC On Campus: PETA vs UGA, Clayton St. recruits in S.C., a new Regent

Georgia’s college students got a brief break for the Thanksgiving holiday, but there was some news you may have missed, particularly at the University of Georgia.

Here’s our latest edition of AJC On Campus:

UGA’s early admissions

The University of Georgia announced before the holiday that it has accepted 42% percent of its early admissions applications. Congrats if you or your child made the cut. It’s becoming tougher to get accepted to UGA. Last year’s overall admissions rate was below 50%. This year’s first-year class had a median grade-point average above 4.0. Here’s an item from the AJC’s Get Schooled Blog about who got in.

Students, groups looking to combat hate-based vandalism

We recently shared with you a report by the federal government that found religious-based hate crimes is increasing on college campuses nationwide. Shortly thereafter, we learned the University of Georgia and Georgia College were investigating anti-Semitic acts of vandalism on their campuses. Next week, Hillel, an organization that supports Jewish college students on more than 550 campuses, is visiting Atlanta for a conference on security and other issues. 

South Carolina students, Clayton State wants you

Clayton State University President Thomas "Tim" Hynes shows some items put in a time capsule left on the campus in 1994. The time capsule was opened on Sept. 19, 2019 as part of the college's 25th anniversary. ERIC STIRGUS / ESTIRGUS@AJC.COM

Clayton State University announced last week it is offering out-of-state tuition waivers to students from South Carolina, the first time the university has done so from any of the states that border Georgia. Clayton State officials say they made the decision because of inquiries from prospective students from the Palmetto State. Starting next semester, eligible undergraduate and graduate students from that state will pay the same tuition as Georgia students. The current in-state tuition for a full load of courses per semester at Clayton State is about $2,540. It’s more than $9,000 for out-of-state students, state records show. Several other public Georgia colleges and universities offer similar waivers to help boost their enrollments. Clayton State’s enrollment dropped by about 2% this year, to about 6,900 students, state records show.

PETA vs Uga

Georgia Bulldogs football fans adore Uga X, the English bulldog that sits in its own doghouse on the sidelines of their games. The love doesn’t go far enough, say officials with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. They say keeping the dog on the field, particularly during a rainy afternoon matchup against Texas A&M, is mistreatment. Georgia fans say otherwise. Here’s our report on the dispute.

The newest Regent

Rachel Little was appointed in November 2019 to the Georgia Board of Regents. PHOTO CREDIT: STATE OF GEORGIA.

Gov. Brian Kemp tapped Gwinnett County’s Rachel Little to the state’s Board of Regents to replace Dean Alford, who has some serious criminal and civil legal troubles. Little’s first meeting with the board is scheduled for January.

Georgia’s Rhodes Scholars

Two students with Georgia roots recently learned they were part of a select group of 32 young people to receive one of the biggest honors in higher education - a Rhodes Scholarship. Gabriella M. Deich, from Savannah, a student at Duke University, and Ananya A. Malhotra, from Atlanta, a student at Princeton University, earned the prestigious scholarships.

Deich, who is majoring in biological and artificial intelligence, designed her major to interrogate threats to biosecurity, leveraging computational biology, machine learning and policy studies to research the nature of infections and their potential impact on public health, Rhodes officials said. Malhotra created a program for youth gender equality activists while interning at United Nations Women.

The scholarship selects students to take courses at the University of Oxford, which is considered one of the best schools in the world. Past Rhodes scholars include former U.S. President Bill Clinton, former Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and current Democratic presidential candidate Cory Booker. The past scholars list also includes a familiar name on the local higher education scene: Elizabeth Kiss, the former president of Decatur-based Agnes Scott College.

JPMorgan Chase CEO visits Atlanta’s HBCUs

Clark Atlanta University President George T. French speaks with JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon during the business leader's recent visit to the Atlanta University Center. PHOTO CREDIT: CAU.

One of the world’s most influential business leaders recently made a visit to the Atlanta University Center, home to the city’s historically black colleges and universities. JPMorgan Chase Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon answered questions from students during a discussion and committed $150,000 to Morehouse College, according to a published report. JPMorgan Chase is involved in an effort called “Advancing Black Pathways” to expand partnerships with HBCUs and hire 4,000 black students for apprenticeships, internships and post-graduation roles over the next five years. 

Emory gets Brookhaven’s approval for major project

An initial design plan for Emory’s new complex in Executive Park. (Photo: Courtesy of Emory University)
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Brookhaven officials approved Emory University’s rezoning request, which will enable the school to move forward on a $1 billion research and residential project that may take more than a decade to complete. Here’s a report about the plans for the project.

Georgia university benefactor charged with fraud

Parker “Pete” Petit donated millions of dollars to local institutions over the years. For that generosity, local officials honored Petit by naming buildings at Georgia Tech and Georgia State University after him, as well as the football field at GSU stadium. Petit, though, was recently charged by federal prosecutors with accounting fraud. Here’s our report on the charges against him.

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