Ud Joseph’s first exposure to studying technology was in his sixth-grade digital media class. He loved the topic so much he decided to keep pursuing his newfound passion in high school and enrolled in an Information Technology Academy. The specialized academy allowed him to work on projects, take college courses and earn tech certifications. 

Now a senior at Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies, Joseph is continuing his technology studies and is working to earn a degree in Information Management & Technology with a concentration in Information Security. He is especially interested in the intersection of technology, innovation and entrepreneurship.

“I enjoy that there is always change and innovation within technology, and there is always more to learn and do,” he said. 

Joseph chose Syracuse after receiving the esteemed Posse Scholarship as a high school senior. Syracuse was the only out-of-state university he applied to as part of the college application process. 

“I picked Syracuse because of its excellent programs, the renowned alumni network and the positive effects that stem from it,” he said. “I believe that Syracuse has greatly prepared me for the future by giving me amazing industry skills and experiences that I would not have gotten at that level if I stayed back home.”

Joseph is currently a McNair Scholar and is working on a research project, “Mitigating Artificial Intelligence Bias in the Housing Industry,” with his advisor, iSchool Assistant Professor Kelvin King. He credits King and others for helping him succeed in college. 

“Many of my achievements come from my work ethic, but they also come from the people who encourage me and point me in the right direction,” Joseph said. “I am extremely thankful for the people on my academic and career journey. I was taught the importance of utilizing your resources and the people around you.”

Joseph previously worked at Blackstone Launchpad as the Todd B. Rubin DEI Scholar and planned and hosted the second annual Afropreneurship competition, which awarded $500 to a student entrepreneur. While there, he worked on his own nonprofit, “Belonging Beyond Borders: Youth Immigrant Mentorship.”

“All projects are meaningful to me because of my interest in humanitarian work and commitment to community service along with my interest in tech,” Joseph said. “My identity of being an immigrant and a first-generation college student also plays into this.”

Helping others has always been a big part of his work. His freshman year of college, Joseph was a part of OrangeSeeds and served as a liaison for The Big Event, the largest student-run day of community service on the SU campus. The experience taught him how to get in touch with neighborhood organizations, arrange student volunteers and collaborate with the university to schedule, market and handle financial matters for the event. 

This spring, Joseph is studying abroad in Seoul, South Korea at Yonsei University as a Gilman Scholar. After studying abroad, he will do a service project and return to his high school, William H. Turner Technical Arts High School, to share his experience with students. He then plans to move to Kansas City to start his full-time software engineering job with H&R Block. 

“One of my top goals was to secure a software engineering job after college, which I did, and I am proud of myself,” Joseph said. “My next goal is to get far with my youth immigrant mentorship nonprofit. I would like to do something that assists people.”