“Before my senior year of high school, I didn’t know anything about coding or computer science. I took AP Computer Science my senior year and I fell in love with the subject,” Jackson said.
“I had always liked math and science, and I thought that it was so cool that I could sit down and build whatever I wanted to with coding,” she said.
Jackson is a member of RemixCS, a group of CS students who make weekly visits to KIPP Sunnyside High School’s computer science club to teach coding. She is also part of the executive board of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE).
“My biggest influence at Rice has been the upperclassmen and alumni from NSBE. When I came to Rice, it was really inspiring to see Rice students who looked like me and were so successful in their majors. They gave me something to look forward to, and I could imagine myself in their place,” Jackson said.
For the past two summers, Jackson has worked at Google as an engineering practicum intern. This year she is going to be a program manager intern at Microsoft. She said that time and experience have helped her build confidence in her talents.
“After graduation, I want to go into industry. I’m still trying to decide if I want to pursue software engineering or another area of tech. I’m also interested in product management, because I really like the big-picture aspects of the product manager roles. This summer, I have a program manager internship with Microsoft, so I’m hoping that I can use that time to decide if product management is the right area for me,” she said.
Gabby Jackson matriculated at Rice University in Fall 2016.
–written by Cintia Listenbee, Communications and Marketing Specialist in Computer Science.