Gabriela Nguena Jones
Gabriela found her love of service on a trip to Cameroon, Africa. More than a chance to visit her parents' native country, the journey allowed her to experience the socio-economic disparities between urban and rural areas. While volunteering at a school in Yaoundé, Gabriela realized that the limiting factors to academic success were access to technology and to more instructors. She concluded that a possible solution would be to place education back into the hands of those most impacted by it: the students. Returning home, Gabriela realized she wanted to make a difference not only in Cameroon, but in her community back home. In order to do so, she became an autodidact in order to increase her business acumen and learned the true meaning of becoming a humanitarian.
She found her passion not only in learning and obtaining a great education, but also in helping others achieve their academic and professional dreams. Gabriela decided to launch Teens Tutor Teens. Teens Tutor Teens is a non-profit organization that provides academic services to low-income communities in the United States and abroad. It is at no cost to the students, and it allows for students to sign up online with availability anytime, anywhere. Since its humble beginnings, Teens Tutor Teens was able to hold a summer rally of 80+ sign ups for tutoring across the United States, open its tutoring borders to Africa due to its partnership with Invictus, and it has been able to award the Presidential Service Volunteer awards to several participants. Other sponsors include Google for nonprofits, Walmart, and Microsoft for nonprofits.
Gabriela's community involvement extends beyond running a non-profit organization. She was also a part of the inaugural Committee of Education for the Gwinnett NAACP. At the age of 17, she became one of the youngest persons to be appointed to Global Giving’s Leadership Advisory Committee. She is also currently on the Board of Directors for Black Excellence Pipeline, which redirects Black youth across the nation to create a new path towards school and educational opportunities. At Vanderbilt, Gabriela will study in the College of Arts and Sciences with a Neuroscience major and Business minor, while following the premed track. Gabriela is excited to partake in the Ingram Scholar’s mission to serve, and she is excited to work hand-in-hand with the community to do so.