Hometown: St. Catherine, Jamaica
Major: Computer Science, Minor: Business
“I first went to STAC to play a tennis match and absolutely fell in love with the campus. I transferred to STAC the following semester.”
You know how everyone raves about what it’s like to work for Google? According to STAC alumnus Jerone Dunbar, it’s all true.
As a user experience researcher for Google, Inc., Jerone designs and leads research projects. His role is heavily involved with designing and conducting experiments. He also does volunteer work speaking with minorities at various education levels, most recently at the University of New South Wales.
And that’s not all. He works in Google’s Sydney, Australia office. And that workplace/location combination, Jerone says, is “beyond phenomenal.”
“Every single day I can do great work that impacts millions or billions of people,” Jerone says. “Between projects in Australia or back in Mountain View, California I can take naps, get unlimited meals, massages, box during lunch, swim, play pool, basketball, soccer, hockey, and a ton of other things.”
But his road to Google was paved with a lot of hard work.
As a student at STAC, Jerone studied computer science and business. He also took advantage of every internship he could get his hands on. He interned as a hardware systems administrator at Spectra Laboratories for two summers before moving on to a database administrator internship with Wyeth (now Pfizer) Pharmaceuticals in Alabama. He also interned with the Computing Research Association, based at Auburn University. Jerone also had numerous internships with other companies while in graduate school, namely, a Department of Homeland Security funded project, Intel, Nielsen and Google.
In addition, Jerone served as president of STAC’s Campus Activities Board, vice president of the Student Government Association, president of the Culture Shock Club, and as a resident assistant. At the same time, he played NCAA tennis for the Spartans.
“I learned quite a bit during my time at STAC and the people I interacted with,” Jerone says.
Jerone recently returned to the United States from Australia and is back at the University of Florida. He is conducting multiple transportation research projects and also his dissertation research in the Human-Centered Computing Lab, while working under the advisement of Dr. Juan E. Gilbert in the Computer and Information Science and Engineering department.
As for the future, Jerone says he hopes to complete his Ph.D. working in industry and eventually start a few companies. He also says he’s not ruling out a career in academia.
Interested in following in Jerone’s footsteps? He says nothing is impossible.
“Ask the right questions, always be open minded, and apply for anything you are interested in,” Jerone advises. “Never think you are not good enough. Work hard and work smart.”