Joseph Gelb ’92 Supports the Next Generation
When Joe Gelb ’92 graduated from Stevens, he told his parents of his hope to one day give back to the university by becoming an alumni donor. Recently, Gelb fulfilled that dream, with a generous contribution toward scholarships.
Scholarships have always been an important aspect of Stevens’ commitment to cultivating talented innovators, regardless of their financial means. As a result, Stevens has a long and successful history of preparing science and technology leaders for the workforce.
Scholarships were most certainly crucial to Joseph Gelb ’92 and his family. “When I was in high school, I dreamed of becoming an engineer,” he says. “A neighbor who I shoveled snow for recommended Stevens.”
Rutgers offered Gelb a full ride, but by that time his heart was set on Stevens. “My parents were supportive, but we were all concerned about the financial implications,” he says. “Alumni support for scholarships made the difference. I couldn’t have gone to Stevens without it.”
Armed with what he learned as an engineering and history double major, Gelb began a career in technology documentation, building his knowledge and experience as Chief Technology Officer for Live Linx and then founding Suite Solutions, Ltd. “Studying engineering taught me to understand technology, and how to solve problems,” he says. “My history courses taught me how to communicate, and how to clearly express what I know about technology.”
The Stevens five-year co-op program provided Gelb with invaluable job preparation experiences, and graduate level courses in management schooled him in how to start and grow a business. By 2014, he was ready to put his own innovative ideas into action and co-founded Zoomin Software.
“I saw the potential for helping large tech companies publish their own tech information,” Gelb explains. “Before Zoomin, engineers would often have a hard time finding the information they needed about the complex infrastructure that they were purchasing and implementing – technology that represented significant financial investments. We developed a way for them to access everything from onboarding instructions, how to implement and maintain systems, and information about troubleshooting.”
What began as a small service business has become a high-tech cloud software company serving large enterprises. In the last year alone, the number of Zoomin employees doubled to 160. “It takes 10 years to become an overnight success,” Gelb notes with a laugh.
The success of Zoomin – and a conversation with his parents – inspired Gelb to support his alma mater. “They reminded me that when I graduated from Stevens, I said that I hoped to repay the university one day by making a donation,” he says. “Zoomin had a great year, and it was possible for me to follow through on my original intentions.”
It was important to Gelb that his gift support scholarships. It is important to Stevens students as well. Nearly 96% of students rely on some form of financial aid. Every gift toward scholarships helps transform their academic experience by allowing them to focus more fully on schoolwork and career building activities. Scholarships make it possible for many students – like Gelb – to earn a top-tier education at Stevens.
Gelb is grateful for the opportunity to invest in a new generation of Stevens students, and he hopes that they will take advantage of everything the university has to offer. “The effort and discipline that it takes to succeed at Stevens will be good training for everything else you do in life,” he advises.
Gelb, who lives in Israel, was able to tour the campus with his parents last year during a visit to the New York City area. He enjoyed seeing the campus and reminiscing about his days as a student and as a member of Phi Sigma Kappa. “The university’s growth has been impressive,” he says. “The campus looks remarkable and the new buildings are beautiful.”
Gelb celebrates his 30th reunion year this spring, and despite the distance between Israel and New Jersey, he hopes to stay connected with Stevens. “As we get older, we begin to realize that the world is dependent on the next generation,” he says. “It becomes our responsibility to help them realize their potential. Stevens students are so smart and motivated. Donations to scholarships can have a huge impact on a person’s life and they, in turn, can have such a huge impact on the world.”