Meet Param Jaggi, A Young CEO


Param Jaggi is a sophomore Environmental Sustainability and Economics major. Jaggi is the founder and CEO of EcoViate, a green-technology research company. He will be featured in Forbes Magazine’s “30 Under 30” this month due to his progress in his field. 

What inspired you to found Ecoviate?

I think it was my passion for both research and creating a more sustainable future for our planet. By doing research for years now, I realized a few reasons why green-technologies are not becoming consumer friendly. My goal with EcoViate is to make green technologies and alternative sources of energy very efficient, completely disposable, and inexpensive. 

What is the best thing about being a young CEO?

Having room to take risks. Being 18 and a sophomore at Vanderbilt gives me about 2 years to take risks with my ideas and company in general. I think starting a company, while still in school, gives you a security blanket.

What are your greatest challenges in running a start-up company? 

The greatest challenge that I have faced is getting the word out about my work. In a society where we value athletes and celebrities over scientists, it is hard to get people motivated about scientific development. 

Would you say that your age makes running and starting up a company a particular challenge?

I don't think it does. Even though the average age of the American CEO is about 50, entrepreneurship is the most pure sense of meritocracy that we have in this country. Whether you are 10 or 100 years old, people will take you seriously if you have a brilliant idea. It is funny, however, to see the look in peoples' faces when they realize that they might be working for an 18 year old. 

How was it getting to meet Forbes’ other 30 under 30s?

Meeting the other '30 Under 30s" was probably one of the best opportunities of my life. Aside from meeting the leading professionals in the energy field, I got a chance to meet celebrities, scientists, and speakers that I have looked up to over the years. 

What are your plans for when you finish your undergraduate studies? 

I am not even sure if I am going to finish my undergraduate studies! I guess we'll see where EcoViate is when the time comes. 

What are your future plans for Ecoviate?

The plan is to secure a few manufacturing and licensing deals in the upcoming years and then re-invest the profits to grow research & development. My plan is to make EcoViate a big-name R&D company that revolutionizes the green-tech industry and, hopefully, creates a more sustainable planet in the process. 

How do you balance work with school and fun?

It is definitely not easy. Since I was young, I have always done things efficiently. When I study, I study fast and effectively. When I do research, I research as cost and time efficient as possible. When I go out to a party, I make sure to have a good time and not think about anything else.

Do you have any exciting new projects that you are currently working on?

I do. I am working on thermo-voltaic system that would harness wasted heat from the motor vehicle. Other than that, I have been working on a few other designs over the past few months. I am also, on the side, working on developing a couple of iPhone applications. As soon as it's ready, I'll let you know about it!

What are you passionate about?

My specific passion is applied environmental technologies. I think my general passion is learning about the world around me. Whether that be research, class, people, parties, or places, I think the world is full of knowledge just waiting to be discovered. I use my research as an avenue to learn about the world and it's vast resources.