Shantae Shand

Majors: Engineering Studies, Economics

Personal Statement

Education has always been synonymous with escape – an escape from the financial trepidation that bound my family and an opportunity to make our life better. I entered competitions, secured scholarships, and sold Jolly Ranchers to afford high school in Jamaica. I was so blinded by the excitement of my Lafayette acceptance, my escape, that I didn’t even consider that college came with its own challenges.

My first year involved switching from Civil Engineering after my first ever internship and becoming a Gateway Ambassador to help other college students make informed career choices. My freshman year was also plagued by poor study habits, lack of sleep and procrastination. All of which fueled a suboptimal academic performance and a 20lb weight gain. However, after implementing some new study methods, systems to achieve my personal goals and prioritize my mental and physical health, I’ve consistently attained straight A’s each semester. I co-created Young and Thriving, a company which has helped over 250 college students maximize their time and live their best lives now. Our curriculum is the blueprint for Lafayette’s TAG scholar program and our planner is for sale in the College Store.

My desire to pour into others just as I’ve been poured into led me to create the Young and Thriving Foundation which gives annual scholarships to 5 disadvantaged college students each summer. I also volunteer as a college counselor for low-income high school students through the AIM Higher Foundation.

I believe the Lafayette Ideal is about overcoming challenges and even more importantly, helping others overcome them as well. I’ve done so through sharing my experiences, giving advice in-person and on social media, starting a business, creating a scholarship foundation, and volunteering so that I can play my part in making Lafayette and any community I’m a part of better.

Academic Activity |years involved|

Charles L. Best Memorial Prize in Engineering Studies |1| Awarded annually to the senior who best exemplifies the ideals behind the Bachelor of Arts in Engineering degree and has demonstrated leadership in the Bachelor of Arts in Engineering Program.

Robert F. Hunsicker Educational Prize |1| Awarded to a student who has done meritorious work in the area of small-business studies.

Dean’s List |4| I’ve earned Dean’s List 6 semesters so far

Omicron Delta Epsilon (ODE), the National Honor Society for Economics |1| Inducted in the Spring of 2021

National Society of Black Engineers |2| Member for 2 years and became PRO in my sophomore year. Plan, advertise and host meetings, events and panel discussions to create community for Black Engineers.

Excel Scholar |1| Assisted Professors Sanford, Cohen and Rossman with their published research paper entitled “Asking ‘why’ instead of ‘how’”: Outcomes of an interdisciplinary Degree Program in Engineering Studies

Campus Service |years involved|

Dyer Fellow |3| Instructed 25 peers on building prototypes for app development using visual coding software, Bubble. Advertise and host programs to promote entrepreneurship and innovation. Ambassador and liaison to help students utilize resources from the college to turn their business ideas into reality.

Social Media Manager Assistant |2| Assist with creating content for Lafayette’s official social media platforms. Share the stories of students using multimedia skills. Help increase social media following by 15% and engagement by 10% in 6 months.

Gateway Ambassador |1| Liaison between career center and students. Host info sessions with 50 first years advising on maximizing Lafayette’s career resources.

ECON 101 SI |1| Provide supplemental support for students in Principles of Economics. Assist with grading and prepare practice problems for exams.

 Community Service |years involved|

Aim Higher Foundation |3| Provide free college counseling services to low income international high school students

Young and Thriving Foundation |2| Donate around 5 -10% of business profits to students in the form of grants/scholarships and free planners each year.

YES Effect |1| Host free monthly sessions to expose youth between the ages of 15 and 29 to the tenets of visualization, goal setting, and the tools required to utilize strategies to actively pursue and achieve their goals

Girls Who Know |2| GWK JA is non profit organization established to educate Jamaican teenagers of their sexual and reproductive health and rights. Hosted 2 virtual day summit focused on understand and eliminating sexual harassment in Jamaica.

Athletic Activity |years involved|

Caribbean African Dance Club |2| Became choreographer in my Sophomore year and Co-President in my junior year. Manage club affairs, social media accounts and board functions. Choreograph dances which showcase Caribbean and African culture. Organize dance shows in collaboration with other colleges.

Runkeeper App |4| Completed Challenges in Runkeeper App amassing over 400 miles

Cycling |1| Regular participant in Group Fit Cycling

Yoga Tone |1| Regular participant in Group Fit Yoga

Special Interest Activity |years involved|

Real Estate Pitch Competition |1| Proposed the idea of a quasi-regional sports facility to improve diversification of the College’s revenue stream. Completed pro-forma for project and market research into the youth sports industry.

Business Pitch Competition |1| Pitch my business Young and Thriving. Won second place and people’s choice award

Young and Thriving |2| Imagined, implemented, and created a physical planner with supplemental digital courses to help college students maximize time, improve grades, secure scholarships, and balance their physical and mental health. Forged partnership with Lafayette’s TAG scholar program to mentor a cohort of 80 first years and sophomores.

Social Media Community |4| Create content on personal social media pages with over 300,000 views and 5K subscribers on YouTube and 20K followers on TikTok focused on productivity and academic success.