Each year the NSBE Boston Professionals Chapter looks to highlight exemplary collegiate members that excel academically and display a passion for positively impacting their community. This past year we had the pleasure awarding Leonard StFort for his outstanding community achievements. Learn more about Lenny and how to apply for the 2016 scholarships below.
Leonard Revilus StFort, better known to colleagues and friends as Lenny, is a native of Boston, Massachusetts.
Through many different relationships and experiences in his life Lenny has established a set of values that he has found sustaining during his personal and professional endeavors. “My dad wasn’t really present in our lives growing up so my older brother was someone that I really learned from. He would always tell me ‘If you don’t like the situation you’re in, put in the work and focus to change it’,” Lenny shared while explaining how powerful it was from a young age to feel in control of his own circumstances. In addition to his brother’s advice about using hard work to shape his life he also walked away with a critical look at how he spent his time and energy. “The other big thing my brother always pushed me towards was realizing that my time is valuable and if I’m putting my energy into something even as simple as playing video games I need to ask myself why it’s important. It’s one of the things I carry with me to this day. I scrutinize where I spend my energy by asking ‘why'”.
Lenny is pursuing a Bachelor of Science Degree in Computer Engineering from University of Massachusetts Lowell. During his undergraduate career Lenny has witnessed that, within the engineering spectrum, there are endless opportunities to grow and to change the technology we see today. “Engineering shapes our world. It is literally in every little thing we do and interact with and we often don’t even see it,” he went on to add, “I especially love seeing the visions my fellow engineers have for how their work will eventually impact lives. I have a friend that’s a biomedical engineer and he’s doing research right now that could help thousands of people with spinal conditions walk and live comfortably.” He attributes these constant reminders to giving him the drive he has needed to pursue engineering and find a love for what he does.
Lenny became involved with the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) when he first started attending the University of Hartford and wanted to get involved with an organization on campus. After searching through the school’s the club directory, he came across NSBE and decided that the organization could be a great fit for him. Lenny’s initiative can also be seen through his desire to serve. Currently he sits on the Region 1 Executive Board of National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) as the Region 1 New England Zone Chair and the Region 1 Public Relations Chair for the 2015-2016 term.
Lenny’s service to NSBE are in addition to his concurrent responsibilities as founder and president of the University of Hartford’s Alpha Omega Christian club, leadership roles with the Institute of Electronic and Electrical engineers, and support of the STEM days in the run up to NSBE’s annual convention.
Lenny plans to continue his work within NSBE and his field of study after his graduation. He is looking forward to following up his undergraduate time with either graduate school research or a career involving either innovative technology or computer processor design. Lenny’s dreams is to help develop innovative technology to change the world in which we live and give the next generation hope and path to follow. “I definitely see myself in R&D. I want to be on the forefront of creating something that can change lives for people in the most remote or underprivileged areas”. Still grounded by the impact his role models had on his own life he went on to add “I also feel an obligation to mentor young people here. I didn’t come from much and remember how easy it was to think that I just wouldn’t make it. Sometimes it takes seeing someone like you to know that you can.”
To learn more about to apply for 2016 scholarship please visit www.nsbeboston.org/scholarships for more details.