Alumni Spotlight: Jordan ’04 and Mason ’05 Smith
Jordan Smith is a 2004 graduate of the Indiana Academy for Mathematics, Science and Humanities. Originally from Gary, IN, Jordan decided to attend the Academy to submerse himself in a more rigorous academic experience that would catapult him through college and beyond. To this day, he credits the Academy for providing him with invaluable life lessons and transformational experiences that, without question, altered his life’s trajectory.
While at the Academy, he was a member of the Muncie Burris Varsity Basketball Team, a participant in the Students for Black Cultural Awareness Club, a recipient of the U.S. Army Reserve National Scholar/Athlete Award and an active volunteer in the community. After graduating from the Academy with an Indiana Academic Honors Diploma, Jordan enrolled with a full-tuition scholarship in hand at Howard University in Washington, DC where he spent the next four years studying Business Administration with a concentration in Finance. Jordan remained engaged outside the classroom while at Howard. He served as a volunteer tutor at a local DC-based charter school, held leadership roles in various campus organizations and remained a fierce competitor on the basketball court through Howard’s intramural basketball league. He also kept academics a top priority as he was a member of Howard’s School of Business Executive Leadership Honors Program where he served as the Vice-President and President during his junior and senior years, respectively. From the standpoint of professional development, Jordan interned with several outstanding firms such as: the National Association of Drug Court Professionals (a Virginia-based non-profit), Credit Suisse (a Wall Street investment bank), Jair Lynch Development Partners (a D.C. based real estate developer) and Eli Lilly and Company (a global pharmaceutical company). Moreover, he spent a semester abroad in Granada, Spain. Upon matriculating from Howard with honors in the spring of 2008, Jordan was ranked 3rd in his graduating business school class.
After Howard, Jordan returned to Indiana where he has held various roles in corporate finance with exceptional organizations such as Amazon.com and Eli Lilly and Company. Jordan currently works as an Associate Financial Consultant within Elanco, the animal health division of Lilly. He is currently responsible for accounting, planning, forecasting and reporting of Elanco’s U.S. Companion Animal Health franchise, which, under his controllership, exceeded over three hundred million dollars in net sales and eighty million dollars in operating expenses in 2012. Jordan remains active both in the community and within Lilly. He has served as a mentor to youth through organizations such as Big Brothers and Big Sisters and through the Coaches for College program within the Charles A. Tindley Charter School Network. Within Lilly, Jordan is the recruiting point captain for Thurgood Marshall Leadership Institute, is a member of the Howard University recruiting team, and has participated over the years in Lilly’s summer internship program as a coordinator, mentor and supervisor. In addition to mentorship and recruiting, Jordan is passionate about financial literacy and advisory. As a result, he founded Knowledge is Profit, a consulting firm that assists individuals and organizations in achieving their financial goals through a combination of financial modeling and advisory services. Jordan now resides in Indianapolis, Indiana with his lovely wife, Victoria, and two-year old son, Lucas, who is already working on his application to be a member of the Academy’s class of 2029.
Mason Smith attended the Indiana Academy from 2003 to 2005. During these years, he competed in a number of mathematics and science competitions, including the US National Chemistry and Physics Olympiads and the AIME. He also logged over 100 hours as an academic tutor for his fellow classmates. Mason was a National Merit Finalist and a National Achievement Scholar.
He received the Axline Merit Award, a 4-year full-tuition scholarship to the California Institute of Technology, where he matriculated in 2005. At Caltech, Mason was active in student leadership roles, serving as vice-president and president of his dormitory and as a member of the academic honor committee. He was also awarded several undergraduate fellowships, both as part of Caltech’s SURF program and as a Mellon Mays undergraduate Fellow. He graduated with honors in 2009, with degrees in mathematics and computer science.
Mason entered the computer science Ph.D. program at the University of California, Berkeley in 2009. He was supported by an AT&T Labs Fellowship and an ARCS Fellowship. He left the program at the end of 2010 to pursue other opportunities.
Mason currently lives in southern California, where he works as a software engineer and volunteers with Big Brother Big Sisters as a youth mentor. He enjoys playing Ultimate Frisbee, a habit he picked up while at the Academy.