Name: Mary “Kaytlin” Pepper

Age: 21

Hometown: Dalton

High school: LaFayette High School

Major: Biology

Expected graduation date: May 2019

Why did you choose Dalton State? I chose Dalton State because I love the small community and class sizes. You get a chance to really get to know your professors and peers when you go to a smaller school. DSC is also really affordable, which is a big help, and it’s close to home, so I get to be around for my younger siblings as they grow up.

What does it mean to you to be part of the Roadrunner Nation? Being part of the Roadrunner Nation means being part of a big family. I think that when you first start attending, it’s easy to go to class and then go straight home, or to hang out with your friends. Once you start to really get involved at the College, however, by joining RSOs or even working on campus, you start to realize how many opportunities there are here at Dalton State. I didn’t fully realize until I got involved in Residential Life that there are so many friends to be made, events to go to, and adventures to go on. I have made so many friends here and had so many cool experiences, and I am excited for the opportunities that Dalton State holds in store for me in my remaining time here.

What do you plan to do after graduation? I plan on furthering my education and going into the field of wildlife conservation.

Who is/was your favorite professor and why? Some professors who have really impacted my college experience are Dr. John Lugthart and Professor Chris Manis. They are awesome people who really care about their students and devote so much of their time to their students, the Turtle Assurance Colony, undergraduate research, and the overall wellbeing of their community and the environment. They are amazing mentors to have, and I am blessed to be working so closely with them.

Dr. Celeste Humphrey is also one of my favorite professors. She is so insightful and open-minded. Discussing issues with her and hearing her thoughts is absolutely thought provoking. I would 10/10 endorse her for president one day.

What activities are you involved in on campus? I am a student worker in the Office of Residential Life. I volunteer in the TAC in Peeples Hall, where we keep and house endangered turtle species. I also do research here on the campus trails concerning the salamander population that we currently have in our creek system.

What are some of your biggest achievements or accomplishments at Dalton State? I am proud and blessed to say that I have been a recipient of the Ryan Allen Acree Memorial Scholarship for 2016-2017, the Unsung Hero Award for 2016-2017, Dalton State Foundation Research Stipend for 2017-2018, and the David Pennington III Scholarship for 2017-2018. I have also made the Dean’s List consistently every semester since attending DSC, and I consider being chosen as a member of the TAC to be one of my most treasured accomplishments in my time here.

What is your best memory so far as part of the Roadrunner Nation? One of my favorite things to look back on in the time I’ve been a Roadrunner is the ASB trip I went on in spring 2016. We went to New Orleans for a week and got to see the rich culture there, do some service work for some awesome organizations, get to know other DSC students better, and partake in some amazing food. It’s an experience I will never forget.

What is the last book you read? “Where Things Come Back” by John Corey Whaley

Favorite comfort food? My favorite food in the entire world is tamales. ©

Favorite line from a movie? “You’re killing me, Smalls!” –The Sandlot

What is your guilty pleasure? If we’re being honest, who doesn’t love a nice long day of binge-watching Netflix, binge-eating food, and being utterly unproductive? I do!

What is a skill you’d like to learn and why? I’ve always wanted to better learn Spanish and be able to speak it fluently. Obviously in this area there is such a use for it, and only being able to speak to people who know your first language keeps you so divided from so many people and cultures.

What cheers you up? I always feel happy when I can get outside in nature for a little while, whether it’s hiking, camping, hammocking, or even going to do my research at the creek.

What is your favorite book? “Looking for Alaska” by John Green

Who is your hero? My hero is my dad. He is the most selfless, hard-working, Christ-oriented person that I know, and I look up to him more than he will ever realize.

What is your favorite childhood memory? Some of my favorite childhood memories are sitting with my grandparents on their porch in Villanow watching hummingbirds fly around the birdfeeders.

Where is your favorite place to eat? Kelly’s Restaurant

As a Roadrunner, how do you Run Boldly? Being a Roadrunner has challenged me to be bold to an intense degree. I have been challenged to work harder, strive higher, and believe more in my own abilities than ever before. I have had to be bold when deciding the path to take in deciding what I want my future to look like. I have boldly stepped forward and reached for opportunities I couldn’t have imagined I could qualify for previously. Reaching goals I doubted I could has affected my life outside of Dalton State, too. The more you achieve what you never thought you could, the more you want to strive to accomplish next. In my time as a Roadrunner I’ve lived dreams and reached goals that surprised me. I can’t wait to see what is up ahead.