Joey Gruber is a University Innovations Fellow Candidate and is her third year at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. She is currently studying IT Innovation and Communication with a minor in Sustainability.
Joey has been very involved in SustainUNO, an action-oriented, environmental organization, where she currently serves as president. Through her time in this organization, she has worked alongside peers to rebuild the organization, created Call to Actions to send to her university administrators, and hopes to empower students to follow their sustainable passions and create positive change at UNO. Joey was also previously involved in the Honors Program as a second-year representative and peer mentor. Throughout her college career, she has also served in leadership roles in the Society of Women Engineers, Engineering Ambassadors Network, Student Government, and more.
Joey also serves as an undergraduate researcher and chief bot developer at the Center for Collaboration Science at UNO. There, she develops and conducts research surrounding chatbots, holograms, robots, and 3D models.
Joey's areas of interest are intersectionality, sustainability, social justice, technology, and mental health. She loves to discuss and learn about climate change, leadership, interpersonal communication, gender, advocacy, and more. Outside of her responsibilities, you can typically find Joey outside enjoying nature, thrifting, tending to her many plant babies, at a local coffee shop, or enjoying ice cream.
During our first week of training, we were asked "what is your why?" I want to change higher education to help and empower students by providing resources and opportunities to help them pursue their passions without additional stressors. I have had the opportunity to be involved in the Thompson Learning Community (TLC), which helps first and second-year students through their college experience. This group is limited to those with a specific scholarship, but it includes things I believe all students deserve, like a peer mentor, faculty advisor, a community of members cheering for your success, workshops, and has an open-door policy. This community empowers students and shows them regardless of where you came from that you deserve to follow your passions, and that we are here to give you the resources to do so. At my university, many students are commuting, working multiple jobs, and do not have time to explore their passions outside of their classes. To me, this means giving students the agency to find their passions and pursue them within the classroom or the amount of time they have set aside for traditional education.
2020 Cohort Documentation