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Impact Award, Fall 2018

Jacob (Jake) Chapman

One of the most meaningful things Jake Chapman learned in college is the joy to be found in helping others to learn.

“I love to teach,” Chapman says. “I started tutoring as a way to make friends and it has been my main social outlet throughout my school years.”

When he didn’t feel qualified for student internships in engineering or biochemistry, Chapman turned to teaching in the Engineering for Kids camp. Altogether he worked for Engineering for Kids for three years, teaching science, engineering, technology and math (STEM) lessons to young students from 4 to 14 years old.

He helped to open two new camp locations and oversaw daily camp activities for groups of more than 30 students.

Chapman also assisted the Fulton Schools Assistant Dean for Engineering Education Tirupalavanam Ganesh in teaching a professional development course for K-12 teachers about the engineering design process.

Beyond education outreach pursuits, Chapman participated in Devil DanceSport, ASU’s Latin and ballroom dancing team.

He is the president of the Sunday school organization for his church, leading monthly teacher councils and weekly gospel doctrine.

Some of the lessons Chapman learned through all the tutoring and teaching helped get him through setbacks. At one point, he failed a class, which extended his timetable for graduation.

“It was a very trying time, and I nearly dropped out,” he says, “but learning that I really did want to be an engineer taught me a lot about who I am and what I’m capable of doing.”

Now Chapman is weighing job offers from three prominent high-tech companies and his career aspirations include not only contributing to engineering achievements but also teaching others about the field.

“Engineering changes the world every day but most people hardly notice it,” he says, “I want to be able to point to things that people use everyday and say, ‘I helped build that,’ and then explain to them what I did in an exciting way.”

He would like to help make technology “seamlessly integrated with biology and make science fiction a reality,” including, he says, creating “a computer that can plug into the brain.”

More realistically, Chapman wants to own a zero-emissions home and hopes to “participate in making advances in nanotechnology.”

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