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Aubrey Bresett

Stamford, CT, United States

Connecticut Scholar Changing Lives, One Hard Drive At A Time

One of Cloonan Middle School’s hardest working information technology people is an eighth-grader named Daniel Greco.

Over a year ago, assistant principal Laureen Mody commissioned Daniel to “clean” old computers and install new operating systems onto them. Daniel doesn’t just work on computers because he is good at it, he works on them because he knows that his peers rely on these computers for their education.

“He is a computer whiz and a wonderful person,” said Mody. “What he does for his fellow students is life-changing.”

Daniel has cleaned and installed new operating systems on dozens of old computers so his classmates have computers to use at home.

“It’s a great feeling to give my peers a way to study and further themselves at home,” said Daniel. “I help my peers out of a sense of duty, and it’s what I love to do.”

Daniel and his peers are part of the College For Every Student Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) program that helps underserved students get to and through college in pursue of STEM fields. The nonprofit program engages students through three core practices: Mentoring, Leadership Through Service, and Pathways to College that help students chart their path in STEM careers.

Mody calls Daniel a role model, a leader, and a tremendous asset to Cloonan’s CFES team.

“CFES makes me a better person all around,” he said. “I attended the leadership workshop in New York City last year and it helped me get out of my comfort zone. I now use that experience to help me communicate with people.”

Daniel is a self-taught ‘computer wiz,’ and he believes that everyone has the potential to learn the ins and outs of the trade.
His advice for his peers is that they don’t need anything more than a book and commitment to learn to help others the way he has.

“If you learn from mistakes and experiences you get a lot further. My goal is to work at Google,” said Daniel.