“I see successful black people and successful women and that gives me that hope.”

Gabrielle Rodgers, 20, Industrial Engineer

At an (historically black university), I don’t question who I am because self worth and confidence are imbedded along with a solidified identity,” says Gabrielle Rodgers, an industrial and systems engineering major and philosophy minor at NC A&T. “This is vital to creating the atmosphere of success and of a community.”

Gabrielle, 20, is a resident advisor, the assistant treasurer of her sorority, the Zeta Alpha chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Incorporated, a member of the honors program and a recipient of Department of Defense scholarship to name just a few of the things that keep this junior busy.

Gabrielle was drawn to A&T’s engineering program.

“There’s no way for you to fail. The staff and the peers are here to see you succeed,” Gabrielle says.

As a recipient of the Department of Defense’s SMART (Science, Mathematics & Research for Transformation) scholarship, the DOD sponsors her tuition, fees and stipend for two-and-a-half years. In exchange, Gabrielle committed the same amount of time to working for the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard after graduation. The Shipyard was the sponsoring organization for Gabrielle’s scholarship.

As an industrial and systems engineering major, Gabrielle is responsible for using technical skills and knowledge to implement effective processes. She’s already used those chops at two internships with Toyota, at a manufacturing facility in Georgetown, Kentucky, and an engineering and manufacturing plant in Erlanger, Kentucky.

But in the long term, Gabrielle wants to take her systems’ knowledge to the field of higher education.

“I know that I can take the methods of critical thinking and solving problems anywhere,” Gabrielle says.

She already knows she wants to retire as the Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs.

“There’s been many people at school that have helped me fulfill my potential and develop and accomplish getting my internships and scholarships,” Gabrielle says. “I know firsthand what that influence can do and bring out of students so I want to do the same thing.”

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