Student Leader Represents KSU at Forbes Under 30 Summit
KENNESAW, Ga. (Oct 28, 2019) — Effective leaders guide their teams from the back, providing enough support to allow for success, but not enough to get in their way, says information systems senior Ambrielle August.
August has had plenty of leadership experience since enrolling in Kennesaw State University in 2016. She is the former vice president for community service and former senior vice president of the Delta Sigma Pi business fraternity’s Nu Pi chapter; and has worked as a resident assistant at the Austin Residence Complex for two years. She was also a mentor in the Odyssey Peer Mentoring program.
This week, August joins 1,000 other young leaders from around the country who have been chosen as Under 30 Scholars at the Forbes Under 30 Summit in Detroit.
Held at the Masonic Temple Oct. 27-30, the Under 30 Summit will connect an expected 9,000 young people – all under 30 – with other leaders, founders, and creators for a massive conference and networking event. Among the 200+ presenters are Jon Oringer, the founder of Shutterstock; Steve Case, co-founder of AOL; championship tennis player Serena Williams; and actor Olivia Munn.
As an Under 30 Scholar, August receives complimentary access to all summit activities, including 20 session tracks, industry-specific field trips, a music festival, networking sessions, a community service project, and a food truck festival. Other attendees must pay nearly $600 for the same experience. In addition, she and the other scholars will attend an invitation-only dinner with major investors.
“I feel very accomplished to have been chosen,” August says. “It feels like all the hard work I’ve put in throughout my high school and college careers is actually coming to fruition.”
August is no stranger to hard work. As a woman of color pursuing a career in technology, she recognized early on that not everyone expects her to succeed in the male-dominated field, which has motivated her to work twice as hard.
During her first year at Kennesaw State, she was director of programming for the University Village Community Council, where she worked with Housing and Residence Life as an advocate for her fellow residents. August later became a resident assistant at ARC. In that role, she has organized several social and professional events designed to improve residents’ cultural competency and help them develop their personal brands.
August is also active in the Delta Sigma Pi business fraternity. As the former vice president of community service, she led donation drives for hurricane victims, taught professionalism classes to at-risk youth for the Center for Children and Young Adults, and volunteered with the elderly at Grace Personal Care Home. Later, she served as senior vice president of the Nu Pi chapter, where she used strategic marketing to welcome 15 new brothers over two semesters.
“I feel like all of the things that I've done since I was a freshman at Kennesaw State University have been uniquely different,” she says. “Yet they all focus on things that are important to me like personal development, leadership, community service, or technology. I was able to learn from all of these experiences and grow into what I believe I will become.”
August, who is pursuing a minor in marketing in addition to her IS degree, believes attending the Under 30 Summit as a scholar will help her grow her professional network and expose her to new and exciting perspectives. She has rarely traveled outside of the South and is looking forward to interacting with the other scholars and with entrepreneurs from around the country.
“That is the whole point of it,” she says. “I have to surround myself with people that are wiser than me and who have more experience than me. I should be able to learn from them and take something different from every experience that I have.”
August plans to take the lessons learned at the Under 30 summit back with her as she finishes her degree and continues her work as an email marketing intern with marketing platform company Mailchimp. After graduation, she will pursue a career in project management, which she says will combine her technical knowledge, her understanding of business processes, and her interest in marketing.
Most of all, she hopes to take home some new insights on leadership from the summit presenters to complement her already strong thoughts on the subject, and to provide sound advice to her younger siblings and peers.
“My philosophy is that a great leader is someone who serves others and provides support, but does not compel too much control,” August says. “I believe that a leader should receive input from the whole team. Decision making should not rely solely on one person. I aspire to be the best leader that I can be.”