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Who was Mr. Berry 2016?

Name: Carson Oakes

Major: Marketing

Class: Sophomore

Hometown: Tampa Bay, FL

Mr. Berry 2016 does more than just Skype his mom on stage so she can be his escort. He is a member of the Berry Men’s Soccer Team and was recently named Defensive Player of the Week by the Southern Athletic Association. He is an active volunteer at the Boys & Girls Club of South Rome as a part of the Berry College Bonner Scholars Program. In addition, he is one of the Sophomore Class Representatives for the Bonner Program and is a self-proclaimed champion of FIFA 2016.


HC Berry: Most people recognize you as Mr. Berry 2016, do you have anything to say to your fans who supported you in the Mr. Berry competition?

Thank you just for going and listening to my ridiculous ideas for the event. And thank you for all the support and for cheering me on! I’m not typically on stage, so I needed that support to help me get through it.


HCB: You are a soccer player, a Bonner, and a student. How do you juggle it all?

The advice I would give is when you take something on make sure you enjoy it. Make sure you love the people you surround yourself with so that you never feel like you’re clocking in and out. Some other advice is to make relations wherever you go, whether it’s a friendship, a role-model or a mentee.


HCB: So as a sophomore, what is something you have learned during your time here:

You can surprise yourself in what you enjoy and there are plenty of things to get involved with. I’ve learned more about myself and what I like to do. Last year, a bunch of my friends and I did karaoke and that was something I never thought I’d enjoy. It’s really gratifying to learn about new things that I like doing.


HCB: You were named defensive player of the week. Were you surprised? Were you honored?

I was definitely both. The guy in the same position as me, we split play time, and it really shows how much hard work the whole team is putting in this week. It really just inspires and motivates me for the rest of the season.

Nicole Lea Gilmer is a Sophomore Psychology and Communications with a concentration in public relations double major. Nicole Lea is originally from Winder, Ga. and graduated from Winder-Barrow High School. She is a huge fan of YouTube and spends way too much time keeping up with her favorites on other social media. Nicole Lea hopes one day to work with LGBTQ+ youth as an advocate or as a PR represenative for YouTube. But currently enjoys working as a volunteer with Summit Quest Cancer Support Services and as a GED Teacher for the Berry College ESL Program as a Bonner Scholar. 
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