Last school year, my daughter did something neither me nor her mother ever did much of while we were in school. She made ridiculously good grades and won more than a few impressive-sounding awards.

Success in school must skip a generation. Our local newspaper shared her (and her classmates) accomplishments.

Unbeknownst to me, my father sent a copy of the newspaper to the University of Georgia’s Veterinarian program’s head of admission. He explained to this person that my daughter has always talked about wanting to be a veterinarian.

The only reason I know he sent this off to them is because my daughter received a letter in the mail the other day from the University of Georgia.

It was a surprisingly large envelope, complete with brochures and the types of various goodies that the head of admissions might send out to potential recruits.

There was also a hand-written note, from someone in admissions, introducing himself to my daughter. He went on to congratulate her on her academic achievements, encourage her to keep up the good work and let her know she could reach out at any point with questions as she continued on her path.

My entire life has been spent cracking UGA jokes, seeing as they’re Georgia’s second-best university (at best). Why can’t Georgia Tech have a vet program?

I actually felt pretty bad throwing that package of goodies away before I let my daughter see that it had come ... I kid, I kid.

However, I did watch as she opened the package, as I was genuinely curious why my middle school daughter was receiving such an official-looking package from a college.

Watching her face beam as she opened the package was a great feeling. I don’t see how it’s possible for either of my kids to know how proud I am of them.

Like any good “little sister” worth her salt, she immediately went into her big brother’s room to ask him if he had ever been contacted by UGA and to show off her package of red and black goodies.

Never missing an opportunity to talk “smack” to a loved one does not skip a generation.

At her age, she may change her mind ten times about what she wants to be when she grows up. She’s always said she wanted to be a vet, but she has many years to decide.

But what a kind gesture from the person over in Athens to put together that package, write that note and send it to a middle-schooler over in West Georgia.

Assembling goodie bags and writing notes might be what this person does all day, every day. I don’t know. But it made my daughter’s day to receive that, though, which in turn made mine.

I’m going to have to rethink everything I thought I knew about that university to the east of Atlanta. Maybe I can even try to say nice things about them.

Until November 30th anyway.

Toby Nix is a Newnan writer, guitarist and investigator for the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office. He is the author of two books, “Columns I Wrote” and the newly released “A Book I Wrote.” He can be reached at

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