From Childhood in Shelters to Magna Cum Laude


Growing up in the Bronx with drug-dependent parents, moving from shelter to shelter, Sharif Butler had more immediate concerns than preparing for college.

But an inspirational high school teacher convinced him that he could make it to college if he worked hard. He rose to the challenge, graduating in the top 25 percent of his high school class.

Butler chose Suffolk University, in part because his godmother lives in Boston, then took advantage of opportunities such as study abroad.

He was president of the Black Student Union and performed in theater. As a junior, he was chosen to be a McNair Scholar.  Butler was inducted into the Delta and the Pi Sigma Alpha Political Science honor societies and graduated magna cum laude with the Class of 2009.

His goals are to establish a community theater in the Bronx and to create a television network promoting issues that affect minorities.

Back to News »