Iowa State NSBE members making national impact: Ugerah Abalu

This is the fifth and final story in a series featuring Iowa State National Society of Black Engineers members who are leading NSBE’s mission at Iowa State — and at the regional and national level. Click here for the first, second, third and fourth story in the series.

Go Global: Ugerah Abalu

Ugerah Abalu, a junior in electrical engineering

Ugerah Abalu, a junior in electrical engineering, serves as the NSBE Region V international chair.

“I’m responsible for trying to encourage membership in the international part of our region, as well as for local international students at the university in STEM related fields,” Abalu said.

Abalu says that some people don’t know that NSBE is open to international students, and it’s his goal to help spread the word. Starting this year, there will also be a NSBE International Scholarship awarded at the national convention, in order to incentivize membership of international students.

“NSBE is not just limited to the United States. We’re trying to go global,” Abalu said. “NSBE offers a really great opportunity to meet people like you and different from you, and you really form lifelong connections.”

Abalu is currently planning a trip, in collaboration with Texas Tech, another Region V school, to Colombia, in order to make efforts to set up as NSBE base there, and to get Colombians involved in the organization.

“Black engineers are definitely still underrepresented, and we’re looking to change that through these networking opportunities and advancement of our mission,” Abalu said.

For more information about NSBE, visit or attend a general assembly meeting, held every other Thursday evening in Marston Hall. There are no membership restrictions for NSBE, and any member can run for a chapter officer position, which take place at the end of the spring semester each year.  

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