Students fistbumping Buzz on campus

Campus Life

“Georgia Tech just completed the first year of implementing Cultivate Well-Being — one of six strategic focus areas for the 2020-2030 Institute strategic plan. During this time, Student Engagement and Well-Being was established, and, in August 2021, I was appointed as the inaugural vice president to lead this new division. Both actions helped solidify Georgia Tech’s commitment to promoting student health, wellness, and sense of belonging.

As we enter the second year of implementation, Georgia Tech intends to expand and strengthen our intended strategies to better respond to what we’ve learned from student data and feedback. The Cultivate Well-Being Action & Transformation Roadmap for students launched with the start of the new academic year and takes Georgia Tech through 2030.

Academic year 2021-22 continued to demonstrate the resiliency and dedication of our students, faculty, and staff. Our student services departments adapted and evolved to focus on student advocacy, development, and empowerment. We strive to exemplify Georgia Tech’s values and always honor students as our top priority. Feedback is always welcomed!”

Luoluo Hong
Vice President for Student Engagement and Well-Being

New Campus Center Welcomes Students

Students eating lunch in the new campus student center

The newly reconfigured Campus Center began welcoming students on the first day of Fall 2022 classes, after the 2019 groundbreaking transformed the original 1970s student center into a vibrant and interactive complex of facilities to better serve the needs of a growing campus community.

“The Campus Center project has provided additional facilities and space to support identified programmatic needs with improved circulation and accessibility,” said Construction Project Manager Nicolas Palfrey.

The Campus Center is now comprised of the Exhibition Hall, the Pavilions and Café, and, most recently, the John Lewis Student Center and Stamps Commons. A broad pedestrian walkway lined with native plants allows accessible and sustainable connectivity beginning at the Campus Recreation Center, winding through a revitalized Arts Plaza, past a reconfigured Campanile, and flowing into Tech Green. These flexible open spaces and courtyards, coupled with new and renovated buildings, integrate the indoor and outdoor experience and effectively double the amount of gathering, meeting, and community space for students.

The new Campus Center houses 12 dining concepts, and an expansive outdoor dining space is available on the second floor. Student services, such as the post office, the Tech Rec, and Paper & Clay remain housed at the Campus Center along with several exciting new spaces: a Reflection Space, a Graduate Student Lounge, and a Multicultural Space. Both a 150-seat and a 298-seat theater will support activities such as student and staff events, and admission tours.

In total, the Campus Center renovation project encompasses five buildings with 232,350 square feet of interior space, spread out among 11 acres.

“Georgia Tech is a vastly different place than it was 50 years ago. We have designed this Campus Center complex to be flexible and adaptable as student needs change over the next 50 years,” said Lindsay Bryant, senior director, Student and Campus Event Centers.

Top 5 Recognition Again for Tech

The Princeton Review has released its 2022 rankings for Best Value Colleges. Two categories that contribute to the overall rankings are associated with career services: Best Career Placement and Best Schools for Internships. Georgia Tech ranked No. 1 for Career Placement for the second year in a row and No. 4 for Internships

The rankings, which debuted in 2004, annually name the colleges that receive the company's highest Return on Investment ratings. The ratings are based on analyses that review more than 40 data points and cover academic offerings, cost/financial aid, career placement services, graduation rates, and student debt as well as alumni salary levels and job satisfaction. 

These recent rankings complement the No. 4 Co-op/Internships ranking received in 2022 from U.S. News & World Report.

Students taking notes in a classroom

Tech Students Complete World’s Longest Hopscotch

In a span of 20 hours over three days, a group of Georgia Tech students stamped a 4.2-mile course that meandered through campus and formed the world’s longest hopscotch path.

The record-breaking hopscotch course was the brainchild of first-year student leadership organization, SEE(k) D(iscomfort), which is dedicated to helping members develop their leadership and personal potential through unique, once-in-a-lifetime experiences that challenge their perceived limitations. 

With this hopscotch challenge, students designed dozens of custom stamps and used a custom mixture of cornstarch to lay down the temporary squares. For the course to be recognized by Guinness World Records, the entire path needed to be hopped, and the confirmation process is underway to get the record certified as an official world record. 

Inclusive Excellence Reflected in Enrollment Numbers

Students walking across campus

Undergraduate enrollment at Georgia Tech has increased almost 2,000 students over the past five years, demonstrating Georgia Tech’s strengthened commitment to inclusive excellence by enrolling record numbers of undergraduate students from around the state, nation, and world from all backgrounds. This includes rural Georgia, as well as students in the Black and Hispanic communities.

In 2021, incoming first-generation students increased by 80%. And for the first time in Institute history, women comprised 40% of the total undergraduate population.

Undergraduate enrollment statistics displayed visually

We reaffirmed our values — recognizing students as our top priority...

President Ángel Cabrera 

ECE Cares Provides Another Channel for Student Well-Being

Under the leadership of School of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Chair Arijit Raychowdhury, the School has developed ECE Cares to capture initiatives aimed at strengthening student well-being and community building, as well as the infrastructure and technology support needed for academic success. ECE Cares will be incorporated throughout the many levels of the School by reinforcing existing initiatives and creating new ones.

“ECE has an important vantage point to understand student needs and deliver on them,” said Raychowdhury. “We can directly ensure all students have what they need to excel, not only academically, but also personally and emotionally. We want everyone in the ECE community to know that we’re here for them and have their back.”

Rohan Sohani, president of Tech’s Student Government Association, displays a myDAQ instrumentation device — a required piece of equipment for some ECE courses. Through ECE Cares, Georgia Tech students can now check out a myDAQ from the library — avoiding the cost of the more than $300 device.
Rohan Sohani, president of Tech’s Student Government Association, displays a myDAQ instrumentation device — a required piece of equipment for some ECE courses. Through ECE Cares, Georgia Tech students can now check out a myDAQ from the library — avoiding the cost of the more than $300 device.

Reimagined Georgia Tech Library Receives Multiple Awards

Having completed renovations in September 2020, the Georgia Tech Library has been awarded multiple times for its efforts in historic preservation, architecture, and lighting design.

In September 2021, it received the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America Merit Award for the custom chandelier design in the Crosland Tower Grove Level reading room.

It then received an award for “Excellence in Sustainable Preservation” during The Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation’s 44th annual Preservation Awards ceremony on Oct. 9, 2021, in recognition of excellent rehabilitation projects that also incorporate appropriate conservation and sustainable treatments to lessen a building’s environmental impact while preserving significant historic features.

The Georgia Tech Library also received two awards from the American Institute of Architects (AIA), both from the South Atlantic Region and the Georgia chapters. The South Atlantic Region ASPIRE Design Award was presented at a digital ceremony on Sept. 15, 2021, and design team representatives received the Georgia AIA Honor Award on Oct. 16, 2021 at the Porsche Experience Center in Atlanta

Georgia Tech Library

EcoCAR Student Team Wins Vehicle Mobility Challenge

Ecocar team standing in front of the Ecocar

Student working on the Ecocar

In May 2022, a team of Georgia Tech students and faculty members won the U.S. Department of Energy’s EcoCAR Mobility Challenge. The four-year competition tasked 11 universities with transforming a 2019 Chevrolet Blazer by adding advanced propulsion systems and automated vehicle technology. The goal was to improve the car’s energy efficiency while balancing emissions, safety, and consumer acceptability factors.

The team of approximately 60 graduate and undergraduate students represent six of the College of Engineering’s eight schools. The group also includes students from the College of ComputingScheller College of Business, and Georgia State University.

Originally a six-cylinder, the Georgia Tech EcoCAR team converted its Blazer to a four-cylinder hybrid vehicle with adaptive cruise control. Its vehicle-to-infrastructure communication technology allows it to “talk” to stoplights and adjust its speed for optimization.

mini brand book

Institute Refreshes Visual Brand

Georgia Tech revealed a new system of logos and visuals in September 2021, unifying the community around a singular, widely recognized icon — the interlocking GT. Along with a refreshed Institute Seal and updated brand standards, the new system was shared and implemented by campus units in consistent and creative ways, from websites to business cards to Commencement regalia. Replacing Institute logos across the built environment is the prime focus for the ongoing project in 2022-2023.

The refreshed visual identity was developed to closely align with the Institute's 10-year strategic plan, launched in 2020, that lays out a mission to develop leaders who advance technology and improve the human condition, and reflects Georgia Tech’s core values focused on students, diversity, and innovation. 

Brand identity examples

Georgia Tech has been able not only to avoid raising tuition but to reduce it.

President Ángel Cabrera 

Another Promising Fiscal Year for Institute

Student controlling a robot arm

The University System of Georgia allocated an unprecedented additional $98.3 million to Georgia Tech for fiscal year 2023. This brings the Institute’s total state appropriations to nearly $457 million – a 27% increase.

These funds will allow Georgia Tech to eliminate the Special Institutional Fee, which amounts to $344 per semester for graduate students and $544 for undergraduates. In addition, the Board of Regents voted to keep tuition steady for the third consecutive year.

“At a time of great national concern over the mounting cost of higher education, it is comforting to see that the cost of a Georgia Tech education will not only not go up this year but, indeed, will be reduced,” said Georgia Tech President Ángel Cabrera. “We are fortunate to be in a state that invests in higher education so that we can offer high quality and affordable options to our students.”

The new budget has also funded a Cost of Living Adjustment of $5,000 per eligible employee.

Institute Shares Roadmap to Campuswide Sustainability

Georgia Tech has launched its first campuswide sustainability plan – a cross-cutting roadmap designed to steer sustainability initiatives over the next decade – and will allocate $1.25 million annually to support plan implementation.

The Georgia Tech Sustainability Plan, developed by an expert task force, positions Georgia Tech as a leader in equitable, economic, and environmental sustainability. Built on the strategic plan values Lead by Example, Amplify Impact, and Connect Globally, which each call for sustainability as a key action, the plan comprises six focus areas complete with detailed objectives and strategies to enable Georgia Tech’s sustainability leadership. The Sustainability Plan focus areas – Institute Operations; Education for Sustainable Development; Leading Sustainability Research; Culture and Organization; Climate Solutions; and Living Learning Lab – touch each facet of life at Georgia Tech and foster an all-encompassing sustainability culture.

In addition to setting ambitious targets including achieving zero waste by 2030 and carbon neutrality by 2050, the plan aims to integrate sustainability and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals into academic programs. It outlines pathways to promote transdisciplinary sustainability research, to establish Georgia Tech as a regional resilience hub and climate policy leader, and to leverage our campus as a “testbed” for sustainable technologies and solutions.

Students planting succulents

Interior of Kendeda building


Kendeda Building Awarded Highest Honor in Architecture

The Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design – the first Living Building in the Southeast United States – has been awarded the highest architecture honor by the American Institute of Architects, the National AIA Honor Award for Architecture.

According to a press release from Kendeda’s co-designer Miller Hull, “The prestigious award celebrates the best contemporary architecture across the United States regardless of budget, size, style, or type, and highlights the many ways buildings and spaces can improve our lives. This year’s nine-member jury selected submissions that demonstrate thoughtful design and include a sense of place, purpose, history, and environmental sustainability.”

In 2021, The Kendeda Building, giving back more than it takes from the environment, became the first building of its size and scale in the Southeast to earn the ambitious Living Building Challenge certification. Serving as a model for new construction and operations on campus, it also is an inspiration for leading by example by continuing to make the Georgia Tech campus more sustainable and teaching students to develop sustainability and equity solutions.

Flowers in front of the Kendeda Building

Arts Plaza Comes Alive With Arts Plaza Pop-Up

Student painting at Art Plaza Pop-Up

The Arts Plaza in front of the Ferst Center for the Arts was filled with creativity in April 2022, during the very first Arts Plaza Pop-Up. Timed to coincide with the end of the spring semester, the Arts Plaza Pop-Up offered students an opportunity to relax and step out of their academic work.

Georgia Tech Arts partnered with professional artists as well as student groups and campus departments to create multiple opportunities for creativity of all kinds. Students passing through the Arts Plaza could take a salsa dance lesson, listen to live jazz, paint a mural, crochet a flower, and dance at the silent disco. Additionally, assistant professor at the School of Literature, Media, and Communication, Noura Howell, installed her inflatable work, Infrastructural Membranes, and School of Music graduate student Timothy Min shared his musical installation Empathy for Two, taking the heartbeat sounds of two strangers and controlling layers of harmonies based on the unification of heartbeats.

There are plans for the return of the Arts Plaza Pop-Up in Spring 2023.

This year, despite a challenging environment for higher education, we received more than 50,000 applications for first-year admission ... and welcomed an incoming class of about 3,700 first-year students.

President Ángel Cabrera 

Ivan Allen Jr. Prize for First Black GT Students Comes During 60th Anniversary Celebrations

The 2022 Ivan Allen Jr. Prize for Social Courage was awarded to the men who have earned the honor of a permanent on-campus tribute in the form of The Three Pioneers and The First Graduate bronze sculpture series, installed in 2019.

Tech’s first Black students — Lawrence Williams, Ralph Long Jr., and the late Ford Greene, along with the first Black graduate Ronald Yancey — were awarded the Ivan Allen Jr. Prize on April 20, 2022, at the Biltmore Ballroom in Atlanta. Their history-making decision to attend Georgia Tech made the Institute the first higher education entity in the Deep South to peacefully integrate without a court order — at a time when civil unrest was at its height throughout college campuses across the South.

The awarding of these trailblazers with one of Georgia Tech’s top prizes came during a monthslong celebration of the 60th anniversary of Black student matriculation at the Institute with a series of banners across campus. The banner series highlighted past, present, and future Georgia Tech trailblazers with a total of 24 banners affixed to light poles across campus and displayed through the end of May.

Also, to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Black students matriculating, the Georgia Tech Black Alumni Organization (GTBAO) hosted a yearlong series of events honoring early Black alumni, faculty, and staff, and their profound impact on campus.

Starting in September 2021, GTBAO hosted a Trailblazers' Recognition to kick off the 60th commemoration. The organization also launched a podcast to capture history in the words of Tech’s Black community. And together with the Georgia Tech Library and the Alumni Association, GTBAO presented an exhibit titled Capturing Our History. GTBAO also hosted a virtual program aimed at reaching hundreds of high school students in STEM who might be interested in attending the Institute, a Black Arts Festival Weekend, as well as an event recognizing former student-athletes and their accomplishments. Celebrations continued through April for Alumni Family Weekend, held April 1-3, and the Leaders & Legends Gala took place the same weekend, featuring a message from Christine Darden, a pioneering mathematician and aerospace engineer who was one of NASA’s “Hidden Figures.”

Tech Ranked Among Top 70 in Director’s Cup Standings

In college athletics’ most prestigious annual all-sports rankings, Georgia Tech athletics has secured a top-70 finish for the 2021-22 academic year.

This year’s No. 68 finish in the NACDA Directors’ Cup standings is especially impressive, given that Tech is one of only six institutions that fields 17 teams or less ranked among the top 70.

This achievement comes on the strength of 14 of Tech’s 17 teams being represented in the NCAA postseason, including all eight women’s teams, for the first time in school history.

Georgia Tech Baseball

Pi Mile Turns 50

The Dean George C. Griffin Pi Mile 5K Road Race, held on March 12, 2022, was ex­tra golden as runners celebrated the 50th annual event. The Pi Mile is an annual tradition where runners and walkers — and participants with dogs and strollers — cheer on one another as they cross the finish line. Held on the Georgia Tech campus, participants follow a 5K path along part of the Tyler Brown Pi Mile Trail.

First hosted in 1973, the length of the race was only 3 miles long initially. It then ex­panded to 3.14 miles after 1975 and, in 2002, was adjusted to be slightly less than pi, measuring 5 kilometers. For the first time, participants had three ways to join – campus, virtual runners on their own, or with alumni networks who hosted satel­lite races across the country. This year, 582 joined the Atlanta race, 180 Yellow Jackets were virtual runners, and alumni ran together in North Texas and Raleigh on the same day.

Closeup of Pi Mile tshirt and race number

Soaring Beyond the Classroom

Georgia Tech's vibrant student life offers students the opportunity to grow and excel beyond academic pursuits — in everything from dance to dog sledding. Whatever their interest, Yellow Jackets know no limits.