Skip to:Main Content

Washington and Lee University

Washington and Lee University
Washington and Lee University Campus Image

Zaq Lawal '10

Hometown: Houston, Texas

Major: Economics

Minor: Dance

Extracurricular Involvement:

  • Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.
  • Traveller
  • ACK Investment Club
  • KLAZICS Dance Crew

Off-Campus Experiences:

  • Spring Term in India
  • Two summer internships with Heinz North America
  • Mission Trip to Israel

Post-Graduation Plans: Work in Demand Planning at Heinz North America

Favorite Class: Brain and behavior. This class was known as being notoriously hard. But I really enjoyed the subject matter and I wanted to rise to the challenge. It made for many a late nights even on weekends, but I came out of that class with so much knowledge and confidence that it set the tone for the rest of my college career.

Favorite Campus Landmark: It would have to be between the Commons and the Lenfest Center for the Arts. The Commons has been integral in supporting a healthy and vibrant social scene on campus. But the Lenfest Center is where I developed myself as performer and dancer. So many great memories are there.

When I got to W&L, I knew that I was in for a college experience like no other. But I didn't expect the sort of consummate self-development in the areas of business and dance that define who I am today. Since the tender age of three I have been a dancer. My first childhood memories are of watching the electrifying live performances and music videos of Michael Jackson and mimicking his every move. As time went by I danced and performed in high school talent shows with my friends, but I didn't really consider myself a dancer, nor did I get any technical training, until I got to W&L. With W&L's support system and budding dance program, I have been able to grow as person and most of all as a dance artist. Dance means the world to me, and W&L has given me a nurturing environment to develop that world into an expanding universe. In addition to growing as a dancer, I have had unbelievable opportunities to perform for Grammy award-winning artists and to start my own hip hop dance group that both performs and competes.

Another amazing opportunity presented itself my sophomore year, when I was selected to receive the Heinz Scholarship Award. As an economics major, this scholarship is the most profound part of my Washington and Lee experience. The Heinz scholarship gave me the opportunity to work in a Fortune 500 corporation and develop myself as a young business professional. I've had once-in-a-lifetime experiences like visiting the world's biggest ketchup factory in Freemont, Ohio, watching a Pirate's baseball game from the Heinz corporate suite and my personal favorite, having breakfast with William Johnson, the CEO of Heinz North America.

The opportunities offered here at W&L are unmatched, and I am living proof of it. From developing as a dancer to growing as a business-savvy young man, W&L has helped me to become the well-rounded person that I am today.