Whitney Van Atta thought she had her career planned out when she graduated from Georgia Southern with a degree in business with an emphasis in marketing. However, Van Atta quickly realized that being directly in the business world was not for her. She worked in marketing for a bit, working for a sports social networking company and a trade show company. But it just wasn’t for her. She needed something else, and she found that in the Master of Education in Workforce Ed online program through the University of Georgia.
Van Atta knew UGA was the right choice for her master’s degree because of the unique experience she could gain here.
“I chose UGA to achieve my online degree because they offered workforce education, and I wanted to teach high school business classes,” Van Atta said. “There aren’t a lot of schools that offer this program.”
She also knew that making this career switch and getting her Master’s in Workforce Ed would help her pursue one of her passions: helping others. “After volunteering with a group of high school students, I realized I wasn’t happy in the 9-to-5 business world,” explained Van Atta. “What made me happy was seeing students grow, mature and figure out who they want to be.”
Van Atta has been able to take advantage of the master’s program while living in Alpharetta. And, because of the flexibility an online program affords, she also can continue to take part in some of her favorite pastimes: going to the beach and scuba diving.
When not on the beach or walking the BeltLine in Atlanta with her dog, Van Atta continues to be a mentor for high school students. She’s excited to get a classroom of her own and help students like the ones she currently mentors prepare for the transition into the business world. Getting her master’s degree at UGA was the next logical step in that process.
“I know that I wouldn’t be able to successfully make the change without having my master’s,” said Van Atta.