Early in his undergraduate career, Steven Mazur ‘13 noticed something unsettling — most high school students did not realize their own potential to serve as agents of change.
“High school students are always told that once they’re older and get to a certain stage in life, they can finally make a difference,” says Mazur. “Unfortunately, this is completely false.”
With that in mind, Mazur, along with fellow Park Scholar Adam Dunn ‘13, created Triangle Youth Leadership Services (TYLS). The mission of TYLS is to “empower and motivate high school students to create change within their local communities.”
Steven Mazur during a semester abroad in South Africa.
The TYLS conference now hosts approximately 100 North Carolina high school students every year. Participants attend workshops aimed at inspiring community change and participate in case studies where students solve real life problems.
Mazur’s positive experience, both with founding and leading TYLS, inspired him to pursue social entrepreneurship as a career.
“Directing TYLS taught me much about leadership and management, something I never expected to learn firsthand in college,” Mazur said. “I made many mistakes along the way, but ultimately learned what it takes to be a successful leader.”
Having co-founded one program, Mazur, with the help of the Engineering Entrepreneurs Program at NC State, founded the TeleMedER company. Aiming to reduce wait times in the emergency room, Mazur’s company developed a medical cart that efficiently connects doctors in the ER to specialists at their personal computers.
“We’ve already developed a working prototype and I’m excited to see what comes from the project after graduation!” Mazur said.
He has also taken advantage of several internship opportunities available to him, working with ExxonMobil and the U.S. Army.
Mazur was recently named a fellow with Venture for America and will be working with a startup company in Detroit during the next two years. Venture for America recruits recent college graduates who aspire to be entrepreneurs and provides them with experience building companies and creating jobs. The Class of 2013 fellows were chosen for their “intellectual ability, accomplishment, demonstrated leadership and initiative, communication and interpersonal skills, and mission-orientation.”
“As I go into the future, I’m confident that my time at NC State has prepared me for wherever my career takes me.”
Story by Lindsey Rosenbaum