Mission

Experience UGA is a partnership between the Clarke County School District and the University of Georgia, which aims to bring every Clarke County student (PreK-12) to UGAʼs campus every year. Through a variety of field trips, CCSD students participate in hands-on, curricular-based learning activities. Increased exposure to college life through Experience UGA fosters interest in the pursuit of higher education among Clarke County students.

Background

An extension of previous school district, university and community collaborations such as Whatever It Takes and the Professional Development School District, Experience UGA currently offers a wide range of field trips highlighting fine arts, science, and the humanities.

Representatives from the Clarke County School District, UGA Office of Service-Learning, College of Education, and many other units on campus had their first official meeting in October 2012 to begin discussing a UGA-CCSD partnership to bring Clarke County students onto campus.

Almost exactly a year later, Experience UGA launched. Students from Clarke Middle School and Burney Harris Lyons enjoyed hiking through the forests of the Botanical Garden and exploring the plots of the UGArden over the course of four days in October 2013.

During its inaugural year, Experience UGA has organized trips for students across eight different grade levels. Our trips give Clarke County students the opportunity to benefit from the resources of UGA, while giving them exposure to college life. UGA trip leaders work with Clarke County teachers and administrators to make sure trips are relevant to the students visiting campus. UGA trip leaders prepare pre and post trip materials to contextualize the CCSD studentsʼ experiences.

Experience UGA is a partnership between the University of Georgia Office of Service-Learning, the College of Education, and the Clarke County School District.

For more information, contact Experience UGA Coordinator Josh Podvin at 706-542-5008 or jhpodvin@uga.edu.

Experience UGA Advisory Group

  • Mark Tavernier, Director of Teaching in Learning, Clarke County School District
  • Lynn Johns, CTAE Director, Clarke County School District
  • Amy Peacock, Science Coach, Clarke County School District
  • Shannon Wilder, Director, UGA Office of Service-Learning
  • Susan Parish, Administrative Manager, UGA Office of Service-Learning
  • Joshua Podvin, Experience UGA Coordinator, UGA Office of Service-Learning
  • Janna Dresden, Director, UGA Office of School Engagement
  • Erica Gilbertson, Public Service Faculty Representative, UGA Office of School Engagement