Student Spotlight: Meet HSOC Fifth-Year Jensen Fitzgibbon

Posted February 21, 2022

Name: Jensen Fitzgibbon

Hometown: Newnan, GA

Degree program: Fifth-year double-major in History, Technology, and Society and Business Administration with a concentration in Strategy and Innovation

Favorite class: Tie between HTS 2101 – Research Methods with Dr. Amsterdam and MGT 4450 – Project Management with Instructor Richard Sapp, PMP, because both taught me so many practical skills I use in my personal and professional work.

Favorite professor: Dr. Daniel Amsterdam

Internships/clubs: Business Innovation Intern with Stacy’s Pharmacy in Atlanta, GA, worked as a Student Assistant in the College of Design Dean’s Office and Business Office, worked as a Research Assistant in the School of History and Sociology on Dr. Todd Michney’s research project, Strategy and Innovation Club, past member of Wreckless and Student Sustainability Advisory Council, volunteer with Newnan High School’s Student-Veteran Connect Program and Beaver Pond Sporting Club’s Enduring Gratitude Veteran Program


1. Why did you choose Georgia Tech?

My family has been lifelong fans of Georgia Tech sports and admirers of the amazing research and knowledge that comes out of the institution. I was so set on Georgia Tech that I applied early to only Georgia Tech and one safety school that I would hear my decisions back early enough to apply elsewhere if I truly had to. I am so glad I did not have to.


2. Who or what inspired you to study history, technology, and society?

My history teachers from high school like Mrs. Hammond, Mr. Henderson, Mr. Quesinberry, and Mr. Weidert were the biggest inspiration. They were always so enthusiastic and passionate about teaching and interacting with history that I could not help but be super interested too.


3. What’s the coolest research/project/initiative/event you’ve worked on here?

I really enjoyed the research project from my research methods class with Dr. Amsterdam, in which we studied the history of MARTA and the sociological reasons behind MARTA’s challenges.

Then, I got to tie what I learned through that group research into personal research about employer incentives to promote public transportation. I was able to include my parents in it since they have had much experience with public transport, including the good: utilizing public transportation to commute to work and excel because of it, and the bad: not having any commute options other than a car, yet creatively coming up with a hybrid work structure (before it was required because of COVID) that again helped to excel at work.

I really enjoyed this project because of my families’ personal touch with public transportation and my passion for sustainability.


4. What was the biggest challenge you've faced at Georgia Tech, and how did you overcome it?

The most prevalent challenge I've faced at Georgia Tech is simply the cost of earning my degrees. Even for in-state attendance, it's expensive to get the most of the Georgia Tech experience. I, nor my parents, have that amount of cash lying around to pay out of pocket for it. The expense, however, is worth the outcome.

Georgia Tech has one of the highest returns on investment for your degree(s) because of the thorough and practical skills education. On top of that, Tech even offers a personal finance course that educated me on the same money management practices that saved NFL players from bankruptcy. It allowed me to come up with a plan to pay off my student loans in less than five years after graduation while growing my savings and investments funds.


5. What is your proudest achievement from your time at Georgia Tech so far?

I’m honestly most proud for holding HOPE/ZELL throughout my entire time at Georgia Tech until I maxed out of hours.


6. What is the biggest change you see in yourself now from when you arrived?

I find actions to be worth more than words. Throughout my time at Georgia Tech in areas like roommates, classes, internships, among other areas, so much talk was had about getting this done and doing that, but hardly anything would come of the talk. The times where I was and still am most happy is when the talk turns into action. I find using the knowledge I have learned from my classes and other experiences while at Georgia Tech to be very fulfilling and has led me to more opportunities to practice what I preach.


7. What is your #1 piece of advice for incoming students in the School of History and Sociology?

Make personal connections with your professors! They have super helpful advice on how to handle the school/work/life balance because they have:

  1. Been there before
  2. Are currently teaching you
  3. Really have the best intentions of helping you succeed during and after your time at Georgia Tech.

Without talking to my professors and getting advice, I probably wouldn't be graduating come May 2022 as well set as I am.


8. What’s your biggest, craziest goal after you graduate (aka how do you want to change the world)?

I aspire to open a small business in/around Atlanta retailing products, such as plants and associated accessories, produce, kitchen gadgets geared towards natural preservation to reduce food waste and increase food taste, among other things, that are in line with a more sustainable, in tune with the Earth, and ethical lifestyle.

Thank you for sharing your experience, Jensen! 

Check out more student spotlights with Micah Maxie, Katie Marchese, and Yihua Xu for insight into what it's like to pursue a degree in the School of History and Sociology. Then, stay tuned on FacebookLinkedInInstagram, and Twitter for new student, faculty, and alumni spotlights every month! 

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