First-Year Leaders

Matthew Wyder
Senior from Rowlett, Texas
Major: Accounting & Finance
Minor: Economics

Why did you decide to attend UT Dallas?
I chose to attend UTD because it is a young college and I felt like I could easily get involved on campus. It also didn’t hurt that I received a scholarship.

What do you like about UT Dallas?

I feel that UTD wants to give its students every opportunity it can for them to succeed. If you have a clear goal in mind, there are tons of people on this campus willing to help it become a reality.

List some clubs and organizations you are or have been involved in at UT Dallas.

First Year Leader, Student Ambassadors, Office of Student Volunteerism, Beta Alpha Psi, UTD Community Garden

What has been your favorite/best experience at UT Dallas so far?

My best experience was when I was helping a friend apply to UTD. They were transferring from a community college and they were debating whether or not to go to UNT or UT. After talking with them for awhile they started they felt like they want to change majors, which took UNT & UT off the list. From there UTD started to look like a pretty good option for them. Long story short they knew on a Thursday they want to go here and by the following Tuesday they had a class schedule and Comet Card. How easy it was to go through the whole process was a great experience.

What did you learn about college life that you didn’t know before?

While I knew college was going to involve self-motivation, it’s something you only fully understand once you go through the process. Another huge lesson I learned my first two years here is to take your time if you’re not completely sure what you want to study, even if it takes two years. Once I finally found my niche that I enjoyed, everything else has fallen into place.

What do you like to do to unwind after class?

I like to watch movies with friends, read, play Xbox, sleep, or listen to podcasts. Really it’s whatever I feel like at that moment because I have a wide variety of interests.

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

I really want to share my stories about what I have learned here at UTD with the next group of students. I’ve made mistakes along the way that I can’t fix, but at least I can make sure they don’t make similar ones.

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

I wish I had taken advantage of some of the easier classes and not settled for some of the grades I did.

What advice do you have for the incoming freshman class?

The key to being successful in college is balance. There is so much more to the college experience than just grades. Also commuter students please get involved as well! Just because you live thirty minutes away doesn’t have to mean the only time I should get to see you is in between classes.


Updated: August 15, 2012