Feature Stories 2022: Antz-Lee Francois '22: Preparing to lead

Antz Lee Francois
Antz-Lee Francois earned his electrical engineering degree in May of 2022 from UMass Dartmouth (Photographer: Karl Dominey).
Feature Stories 2022: Antz-Lee Francois '22: Preparing to lead
Antz-Lee Francois '22: Preparing to lead

Engaging in research activities, pursuing leadership roles, & gaining real-world experience are just a few of the ways Francois chose to set the course for his career path.

Antz-Lee, why did you select electrical engineering as your major?

“I always wanted to be an engineer and I was very interested in the technical aspect of engineering. From taking things apart when I was a little kid, to building complex circuits and data integration between software and electronics.  So far, I have enjoyed applying what I’ve learned to real-world applications.”

What course do you find most exciting?

“My favorite class has been ECE 320 and ECE 321 taught by Professor John Buck. I like this class because Professor Buck cares a lot about his students and their understanding of the material. He has great communication skills and truly understands that students come from different backgrounds and learn in different ways. He is a professor that I would recommend for all engineering courses because he really allows the students to apply what they have learned.”

What’s your favorite thing about UMass Dartmouth?

“I really like the Frederick Douglas Unity House, especially being a student of color, it is a great way to meet a lot of different people. One of the people that helped me really get involved within the university was Dr. LaSella Hall, who is the Director of Frederick Douglas Unity House. He is truly a great person who has a strong passion for serving the community and the students. He has a great heart and is always there for advice and wisdom.”

Tell us about your internship with Dell Technologies

“For my internship, I worked at Dell Technologies as a Pre-Sales System Engineer. My main task was to create analytical data tools using Smartsheet, Excel, and Google Script to assist in implementing systems to track and improve diversity numbers within the organization and with company clients.

I also marketed technical presentations to educate clients, such as CVS Pharmacy, on Dell’s system capabilities to facilitate systemic change that would make an impact on the workforce and company alike. My technical experience at UMassD really helped me in the role because I was able to learn new software and add it to my skill set. This experience also helped me to learn to work efficiently with many things on my plate.”

Tell us about your leadership experience.

“I focused my time on improving my leadership skills and serving a community through extracurricular organizations through being in roles as President, VP, and Treasurer of Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc., Treasurer of National Society of Black Engineers, and Resident Assistant, Orientation Leader, and Student Ambassador of the university.

Being a part of Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. has taught me many things, but what I connected with the most was their mission statement. Within the organization, our mission statement plays a big role in our course of action throughout the year consisting of charity events. We put on events such as Aids Benefit Show and Black History Month Show to raise awareness in our community. I believe that this experience in undergrad will better prepare me for life after college in being a better leader and giving back to my community.”

Tell us about your research studies.

“My senior design project, MADWEC 3.0 aimed to design an effective charging system that can charge an AUV through the wave energy that is produced by the ocean. Within our project, we worked closely with Dr. Dan MacDonald and Dr. Mehdi Raessi at the university where the electrical engineering students work for hand and hand with the mechanical engineering students to create design implementations to further the scope of the project.  This project really prepared me to understand what it is like with a diverse group of peers that work differently but has the same objective goals.”

What advice would you give to younger UMassD students?

“I would say do not compare yourself to other students. I frequently compared myself to others and it can cause unnecessary pressure. For instance, there were many times I considered changing my major, but once I focused on my own personal goals as a student, I started to perform much better in my classes.”