Five things to know about Mollie Simon
- She is the co-founder and former editor of the UGA chapter of Spoon University
Spoon University, a national network of collegiate food blogs, provides fun, short content like dining hall combinations and food hacks, as well as hard-hitting thought pieces like why food matters to people.
“It’s like the Buzz Feed of food for college students,” Simon jokes.
- She fuels her love of research and history by serving as creator and curator of #RedandBack.
Simon began her writing at the Red & Black serving as an investigative reporter and administrative beat reporter, but has since transitioned into an archivist role, pulling content from older issues and sharing them via social media. A lot of the content pulled either relates to current stories or reflects on stories written on this date as far back as 1893. Her role has brought her full circle at the Red & Black since she serves as a resource for current reporters wanting to fact-check or find older content related to their current stories.
“It’s really fun and I’ve gotten to learn a lot about UGA history from that” Simon said.
She adds that one of her pieces of advice to new students is to learn about UGA history.
“We have a really complicated history. It’s not all good. Learning UGA’s history has made me think about the campus and how to have pride in my school and how I can make sure that pride can be available to everyone,” Simon said. “I would encourage people to learn about the campus and learn about the names on the buildings and what it means, because I think those things matter. We should be proud of where we go, but we should also be cognizant of the history, and also the history of segregation and even what it means to be an LGBTQ student on this campus. That’s recent memory but it is easy to forget because of the progress that’s been made. Cheer on the Dawgs on a Saturday but also be willing to address the fact it’s a big institution and it’s complicated and there’s a lot to talk about.”
- During her time at UGA, she has studied internationally at in the United Kingdom, South Korea and Tanzania.
“They were all really cool experiences,” Simon said. “I went to South Korea with the Foundation Fellows and Dr. (Hyangsoon) Yi who we traveled with is really an incredible professor and there were times we were getting up really early to study rituals at the temples were staying at. There are times I remember thinking ‘it’s 4 a.m. and we are getting a lecture…this is amazing.’ Everything was a teachable moment. South Korea was a really good learning experience. We went to a monastery where the people are living such a diametrically opposite life than we think of and the things we focus on that it left me with a lot to reflect on.”
- Policy issues and how they affect society have become increasingly prominent in Simon’s studies.
Through her coursework, especially in food systems, Simon has become even more aware of her growth in considering societal affects: “The questions I was asking as a senior were very different than the questions I was asking as a freshman, somewhat because of learning about the topic, but also because I wouldn’t have worried about issues like that of class and race. Those were on my mind, but I didn’t have an understanding of them. I can see that I have become more critical of my place—how people in my position and how being a white woman who has come from a very fortunate upbringing and has set me up for successes and how I need to make sure I am passing that awareness along. I want to make sure that I can build people up and do positive things.”
- What’s next
Simon has so many interests ranging from food systems to journalism to library sciences, that it is hard to define what’s next. She will be spending the summer working on a Dow Jones News Fellowship at the Atlanta Business Chronicle and working out her lease in Athens.
“I think figuring out how all the things that I have done might add up to something and trying to think through things like ‘was that enjoyable and is that something I can do every day as a job?’ has been a bit challenging.”