Andy Etiosa Iyabor was born on December 14, 2000 in Austell, Georgia. As the second child of Nigerian immigrants who grew up in a working class neighborhood, the values of hardship and education were imprinted in Andy early on. As the middle child of three and a mother who worked three jobs, he constantly saw struggle. By turning this struggle into success, he learned the value of dedicating himself to his passions to reach his potential.
Andy is a diligent, quirky, and charismatic leader, relentless in his pursuit of knowledge. His passion for learning and his upbeat, humorous demeanor are infectious. By watching quantum physics, calculus, and coding videos he solidified his love for STEM and sought to gain knowledge from all places. Andy’s affinity for learning was a yearning thirst that could never be quenched. After taking an online course on Transport Phenomena he desired to be in a place where he could find like-minded individuals as himself. He attended a six week summer math camp at Texas State University and was blown away by the people he met. He used the program to self develop and was excited to come home and create the same environment he witnessed at math camp in school. Co-founding Mu Alpha Theta, he strived to bring together students who enjoyed math in a place where they can compete, learn, and express their virtues for math.
Later, Andy took part in the Leadership Enterprise for a Diverse America (LEDA) Program at Princeton University for 7-weeks to grow his leadership and broaden his perspective on certain issues relating to him. His urge for giving back was cemented as he heard his peers’ stories of hardship, struggle, and necessary determination, similar to his own. Though his academic interests largely center on STEM topics, Andy is committed to help other first-generation and low-income students find their personal academic passions. For his LEDA research project, Andy proposed to create an ambitious yet targeted mentorship program for freshmen and sophomores at his high school as a way to improve his peers’ college readiness.
Coming back to school that fall, Andy set aside time to help his peers with the resources and knowledge he learned from LEDA, in regards to standardized testing and the college admissions process. This speaks highly to his desire to improve the conditions of those around him, while still remaining humble, thoughtful and incredibly witty.
Now, Andy plans to attend Princeton University to study Material Science and Engineering to challenge himself academically. With a precious combination of intellectual curiosity and a community-oriented framework, Andy hopes to use his studies and college platform to make change in the lives of first-generation students. “Think globally and work locally” is his motto that inspires him to grasp every opportunity available and dedicate himself to service work. With the support of his newfound family of Ron Brown Scholars, he is convinced he will achieve a brighter future for this next generation to come.