Alice Baughman

Class of 2024

Major/Minor/Concentration: BA, Art History/Minor, Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Why did you choose William & Mary for undergrad?

As I was deciding which college I wanted to go to, I kept coming back to William & Mary because of its community of students. Everyone has very specific passions, they're academically driven, motivated to do service, and further their careers. But the energy is more collaborative than competitive. It's also the perfect size for me—it has varied programs like a larger university, but I'm able to walk around campus and see familiar faces. That was very important to me.

Why pursue business as a part of your education?

I've always been interested in entrepreneurship and marketing. It's something that appeals to me because I am very interested in design. I was looking to pursue art, art history, studio art—but I felt I wouldn't get as much of the human-focused design and system optimization that is important in business. I came to find out that the Mason School's Innovation & Entrepreneurship path of study combined all the things I wanted to learn because it's such an interdisciplinary path.

How has the academic content contributed positively to your experience at William & Mary?

I've taken a diverse range of classes. Freshman year, I took Intro to Engineering Design in the Applied Mathematics department, and I met a lot of other students who were studying radically different things than an art history major/business minor. The Intro to Innovation & Entrepreneurship class was a lot about self-discovery and developing skills that are important to business. I found it valuable in terms of discovering where my strengths lie and what kinds of skills and mindsets I want to build upon. Risk acceptance was my main focus because while it's important in business, it's an area that makes me uncomfortable. I developed strong connections with the professors who helped me progress and encouraged me in my career development as well as in my academic trajectory.

What have been some highlights for you at William & Mary?

Building connections within the different communities of people I've met. Coming in as a freshman in the fall of 2020 was difficult. Early on, I joined Canterbury, which is the Episcopal Church at William & Mary, and I quickly met a relatively small group of students with diverse backgrounds. Through services and prayer groups each week, we found a way to center ourselves amidst the chaos of COVID. I was also fortunate to go through sorority recruitment. I came from an all-girls high school where we were focused on building each other up, so it was important to me to be a part of a strong, supportive community of women. Through those two opportunities, I've made some of my closest friends.

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