Adria Thorington has never met a challenge she couldn't tackle. Whether ranking in the top 10 percent of her class at the Terry College of Business, traveling abroad to study two very different subjects while living in a host home, working her entire collegiate career as a nanny, or leading the fundraising efforts for a major UGA philanthropy, this Atlanta native aspires beyond her potential. Graduating magna cum laude this spring, Adria has already secured employment at one of the country's top financial firms, KPMG.
Bachelors of Business Administration in Finance
Minor in Art History
University highlights, achievements and awards:
As a freshman, unsure of specifically what I wanted to do, I started out as journalism major, focusing on advertising. While fulfilling the economics requirement for Grady, I fell in love with this field, and decided that a business degree was more suitable for my interests. Having entered UGA with 28 hours received from high school AP credits, I was in a position to adjust my schedule and still easily graduate in four years. Due to my interest in Art History sparked by an AP course I took in high school, I added work towards an art history minor to my course load. While the two fields seem to be at opposite ends of the academic spectrum, I have found that every course I have taken at UGA relates to areas for which I am personally passionate.
After my sophomore year, I received a scholarship from the Office of International Education to study abroad in Florence, Italy. The opportunity proved to be the best of both worlds in terms of my academic interests; I could take business courses while exploring a city that is arguably the most influential in the world in the history of art. The adventurous side of me decided to live with a Florentine family and experience their world first-hand. My study abroad experience opened my eyes to a new and exciting culture and allowed me to expand my knowledge of both business and art in a different environment.
My involvement in the student organizations, Phi Mu and ugaMiracle, has contributed significantly to my development during the past four years. Phi Mu is extremely committed to both academic excellence and philanthropy, and thus, I saw an opportunity to sit on the executive committee as the vice president of scholarship as well as serve as the Phi Mu team leader for ugaMiracle. In 2010, I led our fundraising efforts, which totaled $30,000 and allowed Phi Mu to be the “number one donor” from UGA to Children’s Miracle Network. Further, for the last three years, I have served on the Hospital Relations Committee in which I had the privilege of regularly visiting Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and getting to know the Miracle Children before the culminating event, Dance Marathon.
In an effort to gain business experience with a fortune 500 company, I interned for Altria Sales and Distribution in Atlanta between my junior and senior years. During the course of the internship, I managed inventory, pricing and marketing at the point-of-sale for the tobacco category in a 30-store territory, generating $8,000,000 of revenue annually. Through my internship with Altria, I was able to gain valuable business skills that I will use throughout my career.
My family jokingly refers to me as a “book worm” and a “nerd”, because I am committed to my studies and can be obsessive about making good grades. But, my hard work has really paid off. I’m excited to be graduating magna cum laude. My other scholastic achievements and designations include Dean’s List every semester, Presidential Scholar, Phi Mu Scholar Award, National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Golden Key International Honor Society and Beta Gamma Sigma, which is recognition for being in the top 10 percent of my class in the Terry College of Business.
For the past three years, I have spent my afternoons babysitting for the most hilarious young boy, who is now a third grader. Spending time with him has proven to be both refreshing and fun (and at times a challenge!). From book reports to chess club to soccer practice to neighborhood pickup football games, I hope I have encouraged him and helped him grow into the person he wants to be. And, I hope he has had fun along the way!
I chose to attend UGA because…
…it was ingrained in me. Having both parents as UGA graduates, I grew up a Dawg fan and always hoped that one day I too would attend UGA. Everything about UGA appealed to me; the proximity to my home in Atlanta, the fun culture that Athens offers, the incredible business school, Greek Life, and of course, the football team. I was able to single my sights on UGA pretty early on and haven't looked back or regretted my decision.
My favorite things to do on campus are…
…both old and new experiences. One of my new favorite things to do on campus is visit the Georgia Museum of Art. I am amazed at the unbelievable displays and exhibits this museum offers. Also, from baseball games to Gym Dogs meets, I love to attend sporting events on campus.
When I have free time, I like…
…to read, run long distances, watch movies and explore Athens. I love this town and all it has to offer.
The craziest thing I’ve done is…
…was during my recent internship. This past summer, I was an intern for Altria Sales in distribution in Atlanta. At the end of the internship, we had the exciting opportunity to go to Altria’s headquarters in Richmond, Virginia. As a surprise, the interns were taken to Richmond Motor Speedway, and told to “suit up” for our intern activity. We proceeded to ride shotgun in the Marlboro race cars around the track and drift in 2011 Mustangs. It was an exciting and extremely unique experience!
My favorite place to study is…
…the Science Library. I would venture to say that I have spent more hours in the Science Library than anywhere on campus.
My favorite professor is…
…a tough question! However, I would probably have to choose Professor Christopher Pope. I only had him for one course, “Computers in Finance”, but I left this course with a tremendous amount of knowledge that will be essential as I enter the workforce. He was extremely challenging, and his assignments often required long hours of collaborative group work, but the end result was always a product for which I could be proud. Professor Pope was always available for assistance outside the class, and I certainly did not hesitate to take advantage of every minute of his bi-weekly office hours. I will directly apply the skills I learned in this class to my career—not only the Excel skills, but the work ethic that he demands of his students.
If I knew I could not fail, I would…
…start my own business. I have learned from my dad the risks and sacrifices that can be associated with going out on a limb and starting a company. I also have learned from him how cool it can be to succeed in doing so; especially as it relates to creating jobs and providing a product or service that is new to the market. I believe I am entrepreneurial by nature, and often find myself thinking of ways in which I can improve businesses, products and services. It would be a big risk, but certainly one that I would be willing to undertake, especially if I knew I could not fail.
After graduation, I plan to…
…move back to Atlanta and work for KPMG as an Economic and Valuation Services Associate. I feel indeed very fortunate to have landed a job before graduation. I am looking forward to transitioning from the world of academics to that of a working environment.
The one UGA experience I will always remember will be…
…the Auburn/Georgia Blackout game my freshman year. As a new UGA student, I experienced the heart and soul engrained in Georgia football and the spirit that defines this university. The excitement surrounding this game was like nothing I had ever experienced. It truly seemed the victory over Auburn led by Knowshon Moreno and Matt Stafford could be attributed, at least partially, by the united fans dressed in black from head to toe. I was with all my best friends, and I realized then that the next four years would have a lot to offer.