The University of Texas at Austin
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Alexandria Macias

Alex Macias
Health Promotion
Theatre and Dance
BDP Certificate: 
Innovation, Creativity & Entrepreneurship
Spring 2014

Alexandria looked all over campus for a major that fit her interests and goals. After two semesters in UGS, she declared her major in health promotion and is now a certified personal trainer. Alex is also completing a Bridging Disciplines Program certificate in Innovation, Creativity & Entrepreneurship.

“There will be time to choose a major. If there are too many options for you, look into concentrations, certificates, or research opportunities—these can keep you graduating in four years and add an extra kick to your degree plan.”

Exploring Majors
I was searching all over campus, from architecture, to ecology, to nutrition, to theatre and dance until I finally stopped looking. I met with my advisor, Rose Mastrangelo, many times and she helped me a lot. UGS advisors are really good at asking the hard questions about what and why you want to do something. I took a break and enjoyed my classes, explored Austin, and focused on my habits for a while. My days were filled with activity, moving around, meetings, or talking with people. Then one day at the gym I thought, wow, this is the perfect environment. It’s like a mini world in itself, and I am comfortable here. I then looked online to see what UT offered that could put me in that environment, and I found health promotion. Since then, I’ve never looked back and am very satisfied.

Road Bumps
Personally, my road bump wasn’t anything the university could have directly controlled. The toughest thing was thinking about my future, who I wanted to be, and who I was.

Studying Health Promotion
This discipline is so broad that my major experience was completely customizable! I was also surprised at how much overlap there was with business.

Favorite Study Spot: Private rooms in the PCL with a group, Gregory Gym, or FAC.

Student Organizations
I was involved with the health promotion club in my second and third years. I have also been involved with the Undergraduate Studies Council since my sophomore year. This helped encourage me to begin my BDP and become a FIG mentor. Later, I held two officer positions.

I had an internship at Driven Performance Training for experience and a look into potential fields that I may one day work in. Then I had another internship there where I was looking at the marketing aspect of the business. Lastly, I had an international business internship abroad at a Sicilian organic farm that wanted to promote their business.

Post-graduation Plans
During the spring semester of my senior year I became a certified personal trainer. I train and will continue to train at Driven Performance Training. My ten-year plan is to one day run my own fitness center.

UGS Experience and Advice for Undecided Students
During my time in Undergraduate Studies, I was able to understand what I really care about, engage with school officials that not many students get to know, affect others with my leadership, and customize my degree. Since my time here as an officer on the Student Council, a peer mentor in the FIG program, and by completing a certificate in the Bridging Disciplines Program I was very much affected by UGS in a positive way. I would not trade my experiences for anything else. I am truly satisfied and loved my time here.

I would advise undecided students to talk to people. Advisors, professors, classmates—communicate with all of them. There was plenty that I learned from listening, but talking to others is a whole skill in itself. There will be time to choose a major. If there are too many options for you, look into concentrations, certificates, or research opportunities—these can keep you gr