Lloyd Chambers*: “While there remains work to be done, as society continues to recognize and emphasize the contributions of African Americans to American history, I believe that America will come to fully embrace the creed ‘All men are created equal.’ ”
This story is part of a series of profiles of African American employees OUC is featuring during Black History Month. Today: Lloyd Chambers.
If Lloyd Chambers hadn’t taken a physics course his junior year in high school, there’s no telling which direction his life might have gone. His academic interests were so diverse that he could have chosen any number of subjects to focus on as a career choice. Psychology, history, math, biology; he liked them all and he did well in them, too.
Sitting in that physics class in high school he remembers, everything just clicked. The subject spoke to him and inspired him to major in mechanical engineering at Florida Atlantic University (FAU), from which he graduated in 2018.
To Chambers, Engineer-Power Plant, mechanical engineering represents practical knowledge. It helps him understand how things work in the world around him.
“A power plant embodies all the technology you have in everyday life, just on a much larger scale,” he says.
At Stanton Energy Center, Chambers is in his element, a world unto itself with problems that need solutions and innovations and that need innovators. He’s taken the lead on some impactful projects, including solving a persistent efficiency issue with Unit 1 and Unit 2’s Dry Sorbent Injection (DSI) systems, an emission filtration technology that reduces sulfur trioxide (SO3). His work on the DSI system resulted in significant cost savings. Recently, another large project on Unit 1 did not go as planned due to the start of COVID-19 and other complcations, but Chambers still regards it as an accomplishment because of what he learned.
“One of my philosophies is that everyone can teach you something,” he explains. “I learn so much from the guys at Stanton every day.”
Learning and leadership are threads that weave together his life’s story. He will add MBA to his resumé when he graduates from Rollins’ Crummer Graduate School of Business this summer. In high school he was a high achiever, taking all AP courses, while playing three sports – football, basketball, and lacrosse – and participating in a slew of clubs. At FAU, he played Division 1 football as a freshman, and he led the school’s chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) in his final two years.
His time as president of FAU’s NSBE chapter was rewarding. He learned leadership skills and mentored classmates, encouraging them to set their standards higher. “It was fulfilling to know I inspired my peers.”
In high school, Chambers says he blended into the predominantly white student body as just another student. “I was able to fit in with a variety of different people. I think I can fit in anywhere,” he says.
From an early age, he was aware of the challenges he would face because of his race.
“In certain areas of life, you have to hold yourself to a higher standard just to overcome the preconceptions,” he says.
A student of history, he is both grateful and inspired by the sacrifices and achievements of those who came before him.
“I recognize the many contributions that African-Americans have made toward making this country great,” he says. “While there remains work to be done, as society continues to recognize and emphasize the contributions of African Americans to American history, I believe that America will come to fully embrace the creed ‘All men are created equal. ’”
*Photo taken before COVID-19 pandemic.