Finding Greatness: Jacob Cook

Author: Alexandria Brooks
Posted: Tuesday, January 19, 2021 12:00 AM
Categories: School of Computing | Pressroom | Students | Finding Greatness

Cochran, GA


Math major Jacob Cook, who tutors other MGA students, is planning a career in secondary education and coaching.  

Full Name: Jacob Thomas Cook.

Age: 21.

Hometown & Residence: Cochran.

High School: Bleckley County High School, where he was on the varsity football team for 4 years and the track and field team for 3 years. He was also a member of Beta Club for 4 years and participated in the honors program. In 2018, he graduated as the salutatorian.

Family: Alan Cook (father), Amy Cook (mother), Quay Cook (brother).

Employment: “I am a full-time student at MGA; however, I also tutor part-time through the MARC, and during the summer and fall I am a football coach at Bleckley County Middle School.”

Degree Objective: “I plan to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics with a secondary education certification. I hope to teach either middle or high school math in a Georgia school system.”

Class Rank: Senior.

Activities: “I am a member of Limestone Baptist Church and serve within the church by helping with technology and sound. When possible, I also help cook and serve meals with the kitchen crew, and I enjoy helping with the youth group at LBC. For the past 3 years I have been able to help with my local middle and high school football teams. Throughout the week, I would coach middle school football, and on Friday nights I would help set up equipment and interact with the players for the high school team.”

Career Goals: “After graduation, I plan to become a middle or high school math teacher. I love math and sports, and I hope to be able to use that as an avenue to connect with students and become a positive role model for them. While in school and after graduating, I have realized how crucial development is in students while in middle and high school. I have observed the negative impacts of not having proper role models, but I have also seen the other side of the coin by how a positive role model impacts students and classmates. Because of this, I want to become a role model for students in their most influential times so that I can help to build up a generation that is properly equipped to be successful in the future.”

He chose Middle Georgia State University because … “When I was about to graduate from high school, I still did not know what I wanted to pursue as a career. I saw no need to go away to college when I could complete my core classes at home. I began taking classes at MGA and eventually realized my calling to become a teacher. During this time, I fell in love with the professors and staff, and I also realized that I could complete my degree at MGA without falling into debt like so many other students. After weighing my options, I decided that staying at MGA was the right choice for me.”

The greatest thing he discovered about Middle Georgia State was … “The people. Most large colleges have a reputation of having cold professors who do not care about the students. After a few semesters, I realized how that was not true about MGA. Here the professors and staff members want to build a relationship with you and want to see you succeed, not only in academics but also in life.”

His greatest academic experience as a Middle Georgia State student has been … “Being able to tutor students with the MARC. After a few weeks pass by in the semester, students seeking tutoring help may become regular attendees. Being able to build a relationship with these students has been an amazing experience. I love helping students grow in their understanding of math and to help them not simply pass a math class, but to thrive in their classes.”

To him, greatness means … “Overcoming failure. In life we are all going to experience failures some time or another. The defining moment is how we respond to our mistakes. People who are considered ‘great’ do not let bumps in the road deter them from success. Jackie Robinson, Vincent van Gogh, Simone Biles, and Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson are considered great at what they do, but they have all had shortcomings in their careers. To become great, they had to preserver through their downfalls and continue striving for success. That is what leads to greatness.”

In five years … “I see myself working in a Georgia school system as a middle or high school math teacher and possibly even as a coach. I may decide to continue my education and pursue my master’s degree in education or mathematics.”