Student Life

Class of ’20: Staying Resilient and Ready with Courtney Peters

The fourth-year discusses how she found herself at McIntire and how the experience prepared her for what she is going through during her final semester as an undergrad.

Courtney Peters

Courtney Peters (McIntire ’20) can’t say that she’s had anything particularly shocking happen to her since stay-at-home recommendations have become widely adopted. However, the Finance concentrator notes how, despite recognizing that there’s no replacement for being face to face with family and friends, she’s been surprised by the number of relationships rekindled under the current conditions.

A Zoom call with high school friends blossomed into a 17-person hangout over the course of a few hours. Old connections were renewed with acquaintances from Peters’ days as an Orientation Leader in 2017.

She also spent her time with her family. She had been hunkered down with them in her hometown of Atlanta, but now she’s back in Charlottesville, planning to shelter in place with her roommates until her lease ends at the end of May.

Like many people making the best of at-home activities, her time outside of her studies has been filled with movie nights, baking, and experimenting with different cooking styles for dinner. She feels that being around those who are most important to her has been a boon in managing the uncertainty.

“I think just being with people I love has helped significantly. We’re all in the same boat together, and we’re just trying to be thankful for the time we have with each other,” she says.

Peters is rightfully looking forward to her future, which will take her to J.P. Morgan in New York, where she’ll work in the financial services firm’s Regional Investment Banking group. We recently reached out to ask her how she found herself at McIntire and how the experience prepared her for what she is going through during her final semester as an undergrad.

What led you to apply to McIntire?
Coming into UVA, I was pretty sure I wanted to apply to McIntire. I had always loved my math and economics classes, and I loved working with people in teams. From talking with third- and fourth-year students at McIntire, I was drawn to the idea of a “small school” within a big university, and getting to know my professors and classmates, having advisers who know me personally, and benefiting from the strong alumni network. Aside from that, the classes just seemed really interesting and applicable to any career I would want to pursue.

What’s one lesson that you’ve learned at the Comm School that is helping you to navigate some aspect of your life during the current situation?
Something I’ve learned in Comm that’s been especially important lately is adapting. We talk a lot about forecasting and anticipating in the Comm School, but this is certainly no situation that any of us would have predicted at the start of the year. But this is what we’ve been dealt, so we need to be flexible, patient, and creative with how we go about this new way of life, whether in our classes, how we get our food, or how we spend our ample downtime.

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