Public Policy Leadership, Civil Engineering Student Studying in Northern Ireland

November 2009 By

OXFORD, Miss. - Hannie "Parker" Capps of Sunflower, a senior at the University of Mississippi, is killing two birds with one stone while studying this semester at the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland.

A member of UM's Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College and Lott Leadership Institute, Capps is majoring in public policy leadership and civil engineering. While the two fields may seem to be opposites, Capps said she is planning to broaden her perspective in both areas.

Her study abroad is made possible through an exchange partnership with UU coordinated by the UM Study Abroad Office. This exchange allows her to take courses abroad and apply them to her UM degree as resident credit at the same tuition cost of taking classes on the Oxford campus, plus she can also use financial aid that she receives on campus to help defray her expenses. While abroad, she is slated to complete three required liberal arts courses, and she is also looking forward to traveling and enhancing her other interests.

"I would like to see as much of Europe as possible, but I hope to really get to know the cultures of Northern Ireland and Ireland," she said. "I will enjoy the experience of observing the political, cultural and religious differences, and I'm also looking forward to seeing the ancient architecture as well as the modern.

"I have visited the nearby cities of Belfast and Londonderry, and have plans to go with my roommate to visit her family in England. I've also been getting to know the area around Portstewart, the town I live in. It is so beautiful here - sometimes I just can't believe it."

Capps has completed enough academic hours for senior status at Ole Miss, but with extra coursework required to complete her double major, she plans to graduate in May 2012.

"I am really considering going to law school after I graduate," she said. "Regardless, I plan to combine civil engineering and public policy leadership in my future career."

As for her college experience so far, Capps said, "I am really enjoying my time at Ole Miss and am very grateful for the incredible opportunities that have been offered to me here. After visiting several universities throughout the South, I wouldn't have gone anywhere else."

Active in student government, she served as the Honors College ASB senator during her sophomore year. She was tapped for membership in the National Society for Collegiate Scholars and the national academic honor societies of Alpha Lambda Delta, Lambda Sigma, Tau Beta Pi, Chi Epsilon, Phi Kappa Phi and Sigma Alpha Lambda.

A graduate of Indianola Academy, Capps is the daughter of Billie Dove Parker of Sunflower.

For more information about UM Study Abroad, visit outreach.olemiss.edu/study_abroad.