Call him “Mister President”

Peter Clark, instructor, and Carlos Boyd, Jr., with Ohio Department of Education Superintendent Paolo DeMaria

Peter Clark, instructor, and Carlos Boyd, Jr., with Ohio Department of Education Superintendent Paolo DeMaria

“It has definitely been a whirlwind, but an amazing one,” Carlos Boyd, Jr. said, reflecting back on a month filled with milestones. His 18th birthday alone would be cause for celebration, but this senior at Butler Tech’s Northwest Career Center in Colerain Township added two accomplishments to his resume that are downright “presidential.”

The first came in late November when he was elected president of state officer team for Ohio Business Professionals of America (BPA), an organization for students pursuing careers in business, information technology and related fields.

The second honor came few short weeks later, when the Ohio Association for Career and Technical Education named Boyd as one its five semi-finalists for the United States Presidential Scholars Program. Boyd was formally recognized during a ceremony in Columbus on Jan. 18. The program, established in 1964 and administered by the U.S. Department of Education, is described as “one of the nation’s highest honors for high school students” in the U.S.

“It is a big honor just to be chosen,” said Boyd. “Knowing I was able to make it to the top five in the state is a humbling experience for me.”

Boyd feels fortunate that he already knows what he wants to pursue for a career, and being one of the top in his class for academics, the sky is the limit. He currently has his sights set on a career as an investment banker, possibly working on Wall Street.

“A lot of careers intrigued me like lawyer, doctor, and pharmacist, but when I came (to Butler Tech) and heard about a career path in business, I knew that was for me,” he said. “I am the business type for sure, because I love the business environment. In it, I feel professional, I look professional, and that makes me feel good about myself and makes me feel confident in who I am and what I’m doing.”

Boyd’s Financial Services Honors instructor and BPA advisor, Peter Clark, has not only seen the leadership qualities Boyd possesses, but has also helped to develop them. “The funny thing is, I’m not sure Carlos saw this in himself last year,” Clark said. “It took a little encouragement for him to run for a local officer position, and president wasn’t even one of the offices he put down as a preference.”

Boyd agrees, it took time for him to recognize in himself what everyone else was seeing. “Mr. Clark has really changed my perspective of what I can achieve,” said Boyd. “He saw my leadership qualities and made me recognize those within myself so that I can use those qualities to help others.”

“Carlos has a terrific way of making every person on a team feel important and valued. This goes for BPA, our student credit union, the marching band and soccer team, and on daily projects in class. He seeks input from every person on the team and is great at bringing everyone together to focus on the tasks at hand,” said Clark.

Boyd looks to Mr. Clark as a role model. Before becoming an instructor, Clark was an investment banker for nearly 15 years, working for major firms in New York, Chicago, St. Louis and Cleveland. He came to Butler Tech in 2004, taking a teaching position at Fairfield. Within a year, he created the Financial Services Honors program at Northwest High School and has been there ever since.

Boyd is looking forward to his year as state BPA president, and already he and his team have met to begin planning for the upcoming year. In March, the state leadership conference will be held in Columbus, and in May, the national leadership conference will be held in Orlando, Florida.

In the meantime, his college acceptance letters have started rolling in. At this point, he’s heard from approximately 15 colleges. He is still sorting through scholarships and what makes the most sense as he plans to major in business and minor in finance. Whatever path Boyd ends up taking, Clark knows it will be one of success.

“I’m really looking forward to seeing what Carlos ends up doing in life,” said Clark. “I’m sure it will be impressive, no matter what path he chooses.”