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Student Stories

Student Highlight

College Graduate Troy Privott, Jr. gets job at Lockheed Martin and attributes his success to STEM NOLA
STEM NOLA Student, Intern, now Engineer on the road to success

NEW ORLEANS - Troy Michael Pivott, Jr. had an interest in math in elementary school. He was identified as gifted while attending Robert R. Moton. Post Katrina, he attended Benjamin Franklin Elementary School and was hooked on the math game, 24. Troy became inspired by Dr. Calvin Mackie when he spoke at Troy’s school. Troy would read Dr. Mackie’s book and watched every DVD of his speeches that he could get his hands on. He even shared books and DVD’s with the other students, hoping they would be inspired too.

Troy was accepted into Breakthrough New Orleans at Isidore Newman. Because of his performance in Breakthrough, Troy received a scholarship to attend Newman as a full time student. Troy continued to thrive academically but decided to attend Lusher Charter School for high school and was in the Pre-Engineering track. During his senior year, Troy participated in STEM NOLA and appeared on WVUE Fox 8 with Dr. Mackie to encourage other kids to participate in NOLA’s STEM Saturday.

Upon graduation from Lusher in 2014, he received a scholarship to Howard University in Washington, D.C. where he majored in Mechanical Engineering. Troy was an active student member in American Society for Mechanical Engineers (ASME) and the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE). While in college, he completed internships with STEM NOLA and The Eaton Corporation in Maryland. Troy graduated from Howard University on May 12, 2018. He is currently employed with Lockheed Martin in Fort Worth, Texas.

“I am so grateful to have had the educational experiences with Dr. Mackie. STEM NOLA provided me with the opportunity to see real life examples of science, technology, engineering and math of the present and future”, said Troy Pivott. “It encouraged me and my peers to become STEM majors and taught us that there are more careers in STEM than doctors or math teachers. Without STEM, we would not have been exposed to cool stuff such as drones, alternative energies, magnetic levitation, and hands-on builds, like cars and boats. I see the goal of STEM NOLA as an opportunity to level the playing field by exposing kids of all socioeconomic backgrounds to the same projects and real life applications”.

After graduation and before starting his career with Lockheed-Martin, Troy returned to New Orleans to serve as a professional role model and mentor during STEM NOLA summer programming and activities. Troy is the first person to participate in STEM NOLA as a K-12 student, serve as an intern while in college and mentor students as a professional.

STEM NOLA has engaged over 22,000 K-12 students from over 650 schools in the last four years in STEM hands-on activities in the Greater New Orleans Area! STEM NOLA has organized a group of highly trained and seasoned individuals with broad backgrounds and experience at all levels to expose and inspire students, inform parents, and train educators in the necessary areas of professional and human development in STEM. Troy Privott’s journey represents the STEM pipeline STEM NOLA was created to develop, nurture and grow.