Mr. GT shares experience in the spotlight

Photo by John Nakano

A crowd of people chanting his name. Tech’s president and his wife running his  way to congratulate him. Mentors in the stands exchanging words of excitement. It’s a scene many people may go their entire lives without seeing, but it’s a scene that fifth-year BA student, Stephen Webber, was able to experience first-hand at this years’ homecoming game.

As an active member in several of Tech’s student organizations, serving as an unofficial face for the Institute is nothing new.  Whether it was helping students acclimate to campus through FASET or getting new freshman excited for Tech during his time as a Wreck Camp Counselor, Webber has always had a passion for student life at Tech.

When he was named as the official Reck driver for the 2012-2013 year, he thought he’d reached the pinnacle of his involvement at Tech.  Little did he know, however, that he would soon be nominated and chosen as the official face of Tech.

Webber received a nomination for Mr. Georgia Tech from the members of Phi Mu, a sorority on campus.

After writing about how Tech had personally impacted him, he moved on to the next round of the competition, which consisted of an interview with a panel of three focused on his involvement within the school. Making it to the finals was an unanticipated surprise for Webber, who can hardly remember the moment in which he found out.

“I don’t quite remember what I was doing when I found out, I might have been eating dinner,” Webber said. “I was very surprised and excited. I had a queasy butterfly feeling in my stomach for a while.”

The week leading up to homecoming was a crazy one for Webber who assisted in the many homecoming events put on by the Reck Club.

“I didn’t have too much time to be nervous,” Webber said. “I was more excited for my mother and the fun her and my father were bound to have that day.”

Game day finally arrived and at halftime, Webber, along with the other finalists, were lead onto the field.  Thousands of people looked on as the announcement was made. For Webber, everything was a blur as leaned in to give his mom a hug in excitement.

“It was an amazing feeling.” Webber said, “I remember looking up and seeing one of my mentors at [Tech] waving like a madman trying to get my attention. My mom and I were in awe.”

Family is very important to the new Mr. GT, whose parents were a major part of the post-announcement celebration.

“Getting my mom on the field was by far my favorite part of the entire event,” Webber said. “I was only able to get my dad on the field when I was a driver, so her reaction to everything was amazing. I think my parents are set on happiness for a while.”

After heading to the College of Engineering suite to greet his father, Webber looked around to give thanks to several people that helped make his career at Tech so successful.  He then headed to the student section, where his friends and girlfriend were waiting patiently.

It was then off to Café Intermezzo where the new star humbly dined on apple pie and a glass of milk.

When morning came the next day, it was back to reality for the new Mr. Georgia Tech.

“It was a little weird to go back to the real world on Monday, but I got a lot of random congratulations and hugs from people I knew and didn’t know,” Webber said.

The spotlight hasn’t changed him, however, as his mind is still focused on helping Tech.

When asked what he was looking forward to the most, Stephen quickly responded, “Without a doubt, it’s the events I get to host. I graduate in December, but will get to come back and host the MLK celebration and the Up With the White and Gold Awards. I can’t wait to come back and give back so soon for two events that mean so much to the community that has meant so much to me over the past five years.”