In his college application essays, Jeramiah Woods ’21 described himself as “the take-charge type.” One look at his impressive list of accomplishments—inside and outside of the classroom—will confirm that term as accurate. But if you look into him a bit more deeply, you will see that the descriptors “problem solver,” “leader,” and “eager to make a better world” are equally appropriate.
Jeramiah has always had a passion for drawing, design and innovation, as well as a natural ability to apply those skills in product creation and problem-solving. He envisions his ideal career as an entrepreneur and has been laser-focused on building his entrepreneurial skillset. Jeramiah plans to study engineering in college to advance his ability to execute his ideas.
“The things that I find joy in have always been in the realm of science and design,” he shares. “I’d like to try to design something to help make the world a more convenient place for everyone. I feel my purpose in life is to create things that will help other people.”
Jeramiah has already had two successful forays into product design. An avid golfer, he created a tool designed to help golfers help retrieve balls on the green. “I worked with a partner to execute the design, then we produced a prototype with the 3D printer in the LJCDS Innovation Lab,” he explains. “I’ve already shown it to my golf coach, and we plan to test it out during golf season.”
Another invention grew out of an issue his aunt had with customer reaction to her installation of security cameras at the store she owns. “Some of my aunt’s customers felt uncomfortable about the cameras,” Jeramiah shares. “They didn’t like being watched, so I wanted to invent a camera covering that made it less threatening.” The resulting silicone casing Jeramiah created made the cameras more pleasing to the eye and less threatening to the shoppers.
The camera cover brought Jeramiah the opportunity to pitch his idea at the annual Home and Housewares Show in Chicago.
“Presenting the product was incredibly fun because I felt a bit like I was on Shark Tank,” he shares. “I grew up watching that show and always dreamed about being on it one day.”
Jeramiah’s penchant for confronting problems and creating solutions extends beyond product development. A member of the Student Diversity Leadership Committee, he recently co-founded LJCDS’ first Black Student Union (BSU) with classmate Sade Adeniran ’21. “We wanted to create a greater sense of community among Black students, as well as a vehicle for Black students to come together to achieve common goals and communicate their experiences to the wider LJCDS community,” explains Jeramiah. “We want to sustain a safe space of empowerment for Black students to intellectually prosper.”
Even with his many other accomplishments, he shares, “The creation of BSU is one of the greatest things I’ve done in my four years at the Upper School. It’s important for me to take the initiative to lead when it comes to things I’m passionate about. I’m always thinking about what I can bring to the world, to a situation, to make it better. That’s very important to me.”