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Katelyn Baase

By Jessica Schumaker

HeadshotAs the new assistant to the Department Head, Katelyn Baase wears many hats. Just in our 30-minute interview, she fielded questions and requests from four different people that dropped by, answering questions and directing them without missing a beat. It was clear immediately that she is comfortable in the dynamic, demanding role of being the assistant to the Department Head. She says that the variety is in fact what she loves about the job; the multi-faceted nature of her work scratches that “ADHD itch,” she quips. From managing the department’s head schedule, to processing receipts, planning events, and serving as the communication conduit between the English Department and Franklin College -- Katelyn does it all.

This talent precedes her role as the Assistant to the Department head; prior to this job, Katelyn worked with a quail production plant, a job she received shortly after graduating with a Bachelor’s in Avian Biology from the University of Georgia. Katelyn’s interest in birds was born young; in just fourth grade she was judging chicken contests in her hometown of Perry, Georgia. Her job consisted of determining “the most beautiful chicken,” based on various criteria, such as the quality of meat and bone structure. “You can even tell when they last laid an egg based on their irises,” she says -- so when it comes to party tricks, she has the rest of Park Hall beat.

Those very same poultry contests were held by UGA, and though she began her degree at South Georgia College, she moved to UGA because of its stellar poultry science program. Though she was initially overwhelmed by the sheer size of UGA, the money promised with a job in one of Georgia’s many lucrative poultry farms after graduation excited her. Which is exactly what she did, but it lacked the fulfillment she was seeking. “I’m very Type A,” she says. “I have spreadsheets and Pinterest boards for my wedding.” She wanted to pivot to a job where her people and planning skills could be applied and where she wasn’t doing the same thing every day.

Outside of Park Hall, Katelyn enjoys crocheting, knitting, podcasts, and reading, especially romance. Specifically, she enjoys reading to escape the stresses of daily life with authors that suspend reality with their immersive worlds and writing, such as Katiee Robert. “She includes so much diversity, with LGBT and POC representation and body shapes, which reflects my own family.” Especially concerning disability representation, she says she enjoys magic systems that are integrated into the lived realities of people with disabilities, instead of magically erasing their disabilities entirely. “Because you can’t erase how someone has lived,” she says. “My ADHD, for example -- it frames my world. Even if I was somehow ‘fixed’ -- which I wouldn’t want -- my mind would be the same; it’s how I lived.”

Katelyn plans to get married this September to her fiance, whom she has been engaged to since November of 2022. The long engagement has allowed her to carefully plan every detail of the wedding, and it sounds magical. Until then, she can be found throwing axes at Lumberjax, attempting to finish a three-person sized kids meal at Jinya, or, of course, working as the assistant to the department head in Park Hall.


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