First-Year Leaders

Olivia Belli
Senior from Brownwood, Texas
Major: Molecular Biology

Why did you decide to attend UT Dallas?
I was in search of a medium sized public university and came across UT Dallas by chance. Because of UT Dallas’ dedication to research, ever-changing campus, amazing pre-health advising center, incredible Natural Science courses, emphasis on academics, large number of student organizations, outstanding professors, and overall quirkiness and friendliness of the University I knew being a Comet was the best for me!

What do you like about UT Dallas?
I love UT Dallas because many changes are occurring which students are invited to take a part of. Whether it is expanding the SU, opening the mall, or being involved with programs like First Year Leader, UT Dallas is interested in not only seeing students succeed, but having students change the landscape of the campus as well. In addition, Something I also appreciate is that UT Dallas is deeply focused on academics and being an innovator in research. I have pride in what my school has accomplished through the outstanding faculty that serve UT Dallas.

List some clubs and organizations you are or have been involved in at UT Dallas.
HOSA, AED, Student Ambassadors, National Residence Hall Honorary, Peer Advisors, Peer Led Team Leading, Power Dancers, Peer Health Educators, Pre-Health Living Learning Community, First Year Leader

What has been your favorite/best experience at UT Dallas so far?
My favorite experience as a whole has been the opportunity to become involved at UT Dallas through the plethora of organizations. I have enjoyed being involved with many organizations that cater to my interests and also sharpen skills such as professional, organization, and communication.

What did you learn about college life that you didn’t know before?
The main lesson that I learned about college life is that being smart will only get you so far. Hard work is what determines academic success.

What do you like to do to unwind after class?

I enjoy volunteering at Second Chance SPCA (I like to term this ‘puppy therapy’), writing Of the Month Awards, dancing, watching documentaries, and of course hanging out with friends to reduce stress.

Why did you decide to become a First Year Leader (FYL)?

I have a passion for teaching and UT Dallas which the FYL program meshes together very well. Being a Freshman Peer Advisor, I am very enthusiastic about helping freshman get the best experience possible through becoming involved, gaining helpful skills, and learning through others’ experiences.

Is there anything you wish you did during your freshman year that you didn’t?

My freshman year consisted of me worrying too much about classes and not making any mistakes. I wish I would have made an effort to have more fun and experience what UT Dallas had to offer in terms of social programs.

What advice do you have for the incoming freshman class?
Do not become intimidated by those around you, but focus on what needs to be done in order to achieve you personal goals. There is no set ‘path’ in college and many students never pave their own.


Updated: August 15, 2012