CREATE Scholar Leaf Kaboli

A Q & A with one of the scholars from the NSF-funded "Creating Retention and Engagement for Academically Talented Engineers" program. Leaf is a member of the first cohort of CREATE program scholars.

Victor Guzman

Out of a love of helping people, Leaf Kaboli hopes to become a professor because "teaching and educating people is the best way for me to contribute to a better society."

CREATE Scholar Leaf Kaboli

A Q & A with one of the scholars from the NSF-funded "Creating Retention and Engagement for Academically Talented Engineers" program. Leaf is a member of the first cohort of CREATE program scholars.

Out of a love of helping people, Leaf Kaboli hopes to become a professor because "teaching and educating people is the best way for me to contribute to a better society."

Victor Guzman

Out of a love of helping people, Leaf Kaboli hopes to become a professor because "teaching and educating people is the best way for me to contribute to a better society."

Hometown: Boulder City, Nev. by way of Gallup, New Mexico
Mechanical Engineering and Political Science with a minor in Mathematics (class of 2023)

What got you interested in engineering?

I got interested in engineering throughout middle and high school because I was always one of the best mathematical students in my year. I have enjoyed math ever since I was a child (this stemmed from my father being a high school math teacher) and I always felt that I should do something positive with that skill. It has been suggested that I should have gone into the medical field, ever since I was a child, however, I am awful with bodily functions and fluids, and then thought that using math in the form of engineering would be the most beneficial use of my skills and time.

What impact do you hope to have through your engineering career?

I hope to better society by educating the masses, whether it be through engineering or something else. Essentially, I have always enjoyed helping people and if I can design a better airplane that is capable of being 10% more fuel-efficient or if I can educate people on how to design these planes, I feel that I have helped people and that my brain has been useful to myself and society as a whole.

What does the CREATE program mean to you?

The CREATE program has meant a decent amount to me in that it will allow me to graduate debt-free from my bachelor's program. It has also allowed me to connect and network myself with current engineers and engineering professors so that I can find and set up opportunities for my future success. Basically, it has made engineering a far less daunting choice than I could have imagined when I began over a year ago.

In what ways has your peer mentor helped you?

The peer mentor aspect of the CREATE program has allowed me to connect with engineering students and discuss possible future plans that are geared towards my success. This ability to discuss classes and other things with someone my own age that is a little farther ahead has been beneficial in that I am able to be more personable instead of feeling like I am talking to a superior which can be daunting sometimes.

What advice would you give someone looking to follow in your footsteps?

I would give them the advice to not declare two majors with one of them being engineering because, while I have enjoyed the workload and constant class, I know that this plan that I have set forth is one that many people should not dare begin. I am busy all day every day and the way that I have set up my life is so that I am busy constantly and always in need of a break, yet only occasionally getting one

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