Jacob Tzegaegbe, a Civil Engineering student, has career goals to obtain a PhD in Civil Engineering specializing in infrastructure systems and pursue a career in academia or with the UN. He would like to pursue research to create sustainable infrastructure in developing nations to stimulate economy and raise the quality of life.
A native Georgian by birth, but with roots in Nigeria and Israel where his father and mother were born, Jacob is the eldest son of five children and the first person in his family to attend college. Since becoming a Yellow Jacket, his involvements include being the current Academic Excellence Chair and past LDR Chair for the Georgia Tech Chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers, President and past Treasurer of the Nu Mu Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., the Nominations Chair for the Student Foundation Board of Trustees, SGA Senior Class President, a member of Omicron Delta Kappa Leadership Honors Fraternity, a member of the GT Vice President of Institute Diversity Student Advisory Council, a two year letterman on the Division I GT Swimming and Diving Team, and a member of the Georgia Tech Civil Engineering Student Advisory Council. Along with classes and involvement, he has worked part-time at on-campus OMED Educational Services as a tutor and has pursued research part-time through the NSF funded FACES program. Service and excellence are two pillars he stands for and are integrated in to everything I do. He participates in weekly community service through his fraternity to help mentor youths in the greater Atlanta community.
In the Georgia Tech community he created a program called Scholarship Sundays. This initiative combated the very low retention rates of African Americans at Georgia Tech by creating an incentive program to encourage students to make the most of their weekends. This program pulled resources from both the Georgia Tech Chapter of NSBE and Alpha Phi Alpha to bring in a large number of freshmen each Sunday to make the most of the free tutoring services on campus. Top students earned monetary scholarships to offset the costs of books and all students worked to “start their week ahead of the curve”. The program was very successful in its first year, bringing in almost half the freshman African American students each Sunday, and is now in its second year of existence.
Jacob received the National Society of Black Engineers Golden Torch Award as Mike Shinn Distinguished member of the year in 2011. "I was extremely humbled and appreciative that I was the recipient of the Mike Shinn Distinguished Engineer of the Year Award," said Jacob. "It comes as culmination of four years of hard work to better myself and my community. I never thought coming to Georgia Tech four years ago that I would see myself rise to such heights. I think this award is a testament to the types of leaders Georgia Tech creates in and outside the classroom."