Crissandra George – Alumna Spotlight
Hometown: Hawthorne, PA
BA in Linguistics and Spanish, minor in Swahili (2019)
“I always grew up loving languages. I also grew curious about linguistics, took Introduction to Linguistic Science, and fell in love. I loved seeing how everyone speaks differently and learning the reasons why they do. Linguistics gave me a new way to look at the world.”
George worked on the Linguistics Atlas Project with Dr. Burkette where she could see language variation documented on paper by linguists she learned about in the classroom. Sociolinguistics classes pushed her to conduct interviews in nearby Water Valley to study vocabulary used in certain industries. She also received awards such as Outstanding Swahili Student and Outstanding Linguistics Student, and was inducted into the Phi Sigma Iota and Sigma Delta Pi.
“College is the time to figure out what you love and that is how I spent most of this time. Join clubs geared toward your major. Ole Miss provides many opportunities that are beyond the classroom to practice your passion.”
George attends graduate school to specialize in sociolinguistics, with a career goal to become a faculty member. “You cannot blame me for wanting to be a professor when UM has so many great professors, especially in Modern Languages.”
She earned a MA in Linguistic Theory and Typology from the University of Kentucky. She has been a graduate research assistant with the Linguistic Atlas Project where she studyied variation of American Englishes with a focus on Appalachian Englishes and perceptual dialectology in ARC labeled counties of Pennsylvania.
George is now in the Master’s program in Library and Information Science, and is a Graduate Student Acquisitions Assistant with the University Press of Kentucky, and is a Graduate Student with the UK Libraries. She is also an oral history interviewer with the Kentucky Climate Consortium’s Oral History project.
Why study linguistics at UM?
“There are so many wonderful and helpful professors in Modern Languages. They truly want to see every student succeed, and create a wonderful environment to expand our horizons and allow us to think critically. The linguistics degree here is like a hidden gem. Once you find the gem or your passion, much knowledge and success will find you.”