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Jesse Li

Jessie Li

  • Major: Chemical Engineering
  • Hometown: Knoxville, Tennessee
  • Graduation Year: 2024
  • E-mail:

Ambassador Profile

Hi future Volunteers!

My name is Jessie Li and I'm a junior majoring in chemical engineering with an honors biomolecular concentration and a German minor. Having spent the majority of my life in Knoxville, I never really thought of going to the university in my backyard, but while I was touring colleges during my senior year of high school, I fell in love with Rocky Top and realized I couldn't see myself going anywhere else. After spending a little over a year at UT and the Tickle College of Engineering, I couldn't be happier with my choice!

One of my favorite parts about the Tickle College of Engineering is that you get to attend a large research university with all the resources and opportunities you could ever imagine (UT) while also experiencing the intimacy and camaraderie of a smaller school (TCE). Coming from a bit of a competitive high school, I was very happy to learn that the Tickle College is collaborative rather than competitive. You'll often find students working together on homework or bouncing ideas off of each other for projects. And when we do get competitive, it's friendly and lots of fun!

On campus, I am involved in undergraduate research, honors, and several organizations. I research CRISPR technologies for diagnostics and antimicrobials with the Trinh Lab, which is super cool because working with CRISPR systems is pretty much exactly what I've wanted to do since high school! In addition to that, I am a part of the Haslam Scholars Program and the Cook Grand Challenge Honors Program. I currently serve as the community outreach director for the Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers and am also involved in the American Institute for Chemical Engineers (AIChE), Chem-E-Car team, TedxUTK, and Diversity Affairs committee of Student Government Association. Being involved has allowed me to form a community of like-minded individuals at UT, making my transition to college so much easier.

My experience at the Tickle College of Engineering has been wonderful all around. I have truly found a second home and family at UT, and if I could go back in time, I would tell myself that sometimes, the thing that you have been looking for for so long is just a 30 minute drive away. I'm honored to be a small part of your decision in choosing a home for the next four years, and I hope to see you on Rocky Top someday!

(If you have any questions about anything that I mentioned here or just want to talk, please feel free to reach out to me—I would love to chat!)

Jesse Li

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