We have the most outstanding students in the Department of Philosophy. One such student is Elizabeth Autrey, a graduating senior.
Elizabeth was a member of the 2019-2020 Ethics Bowl team and she was selected as the 2019 winner of the George W. Beiswanger Award.
We caught up with her to talk about why she chose to study Philosophy and her plans for the future.
What was the best part of your experience in the philosophy department?
Our philosophy department is full of some of the top professors and students at Georgia State. The professors are encouraging and approachable, and the students passionate. I made some lifelong friends and mentors through my involvement in the philosophy program.
Favorite philosophy classes?
I enjoyed every philosophy class I took, but I particularly loved Ethics and Contemporary Public Policy with Dr. Andrew Cohen. Each year, he prepares the class to compete in the regional ethics bowl—I competed for three years in a row because of how fun it was. He is a tough but fair professor and a fantastic mentor. Another class that I found very interesting was Hume taught by Dr. Eric Wilson. Although I’m still not confident that I understand Hume’s Treatise of Human Nature, Dr. Wilson was always very patient and knowledgeable and would answer my questions no matter how trivial. A couple of other classes worth mentioning are Philosophy of Law and Symbolic Logic (very fun–when you start getting into truth trees, you can trick your non-philosophy friends into believing you’re in Good Will Hunting).
Why did you choose philosophy?
I went into college as an undeclared major and took intro to philosophy with Dr. Jessica Berry during my second semester. After her class, I knew philosophy was right for me! I enjoyed the conversations that her class sparked, and I found myself trying to apply philosophical principles in my everyday life. Philosophy was a challenging major, but I believe that it made me a more well-rounded and introspective person.
What are you doing after graduation?
Post-graduation, I applied to law school. After months of “strategizing” (indecisiveness), I narrowed my choices to UCLA Law and Emory. With all of the current uncertainty, I’ve chosen to stay close to family, and this fall I will attend Emory School of Law with a merit scholarship. During law school, I plan to pursue public interest law so that I can continue working with the International Rescue Committee.