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Technology, Engineering, and Design Education Student Lisset Botello Martinez Awarded First-ever NC State College of Education Bob Davis Scholarship

Lisset Botello Martinez

Lisset Botello Martinez ‘24 moved to the United States at the age of 3 and, growing up, her mother instilled in her the importance of having access to education.

“From the moment she left Mexico and the poverty that plagued the country, my mother never wanted any of her children to face the same circumstances she went through, and that was not having access to an education,” Martinez said.

Her mother set high expectations, Martinez says, and always encouraged her and her siblings to study, dream big and attend a prestigious university. Doing well in school, her mother said, would “open the door to a brighter future.”

But as a first-generation college student and the oldest of five children, Martinez worried if she could afford to pursue a college degree. “The financial burden discouraged me from wanting to pursue my career goals at NC State,” she said.

So she was relieved when she learned she had received the Bob Davis Scholarship, which Bob Davis ‘71 and his wife, Judy Morgan-Davis, an NC State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences alumna, established. The Davises said they are pleased to have the opportunity to support an education student at their beloved NC State. “It is a blessing to give and see a positive impact,” Bob Davis said. Martinez is the first recipient of the scholarship.

“I was shocked when I heard I was the recipient of the Bob Davis Scholarship,” Martinez said. “This achievement became a blessing and will make it possible for me to chase after my dreams.”

Her dream includes applying the education and experiences she will receive at the NC State College of Education to become a graphic designer at Apple — a dream that took root in middle school when her mother gave her her first Apple product, an iPod Touch.

“Apple’s mission to reinvent their products to make them better inspired me to pursue technology and innovation,” Martinez said.

That inspiration led her to the NC State College of Education to pursue a degree in technology, engineering and design education with a minor in graphic communications.

As a high school student at the Middle College of UNCG in Greensboro, Martinez enjoyed art and drawing and knew she wanted to attend NC State. It was her guidance counselor, an NC State alumna, who encouraged her to major in technology, engineering, and design education (TED). When she discovered the non-licensure graphics communications option with the TED program, she knew that major was best suited for her interests.

“With a degree in technology, engineering, and design education, I can become a graphic designer for Apple and, perhaps, design their next products or advertisements,” she said. “I want to make my mother proud and become an example for my younger siblings to follow.”

The Greensboro native chose NC State, she says, because it was affordable compared to other universities and because of its prestigious scientific and engineering programs. She was also encouraged by the diversity among the students and the welcoming atmosphere. Another main draw was the university’s connections to California’s Silicon Valley.

With plans of being a graphic designer, Martinez says NC State offers her the best chance of achieving her dreams — which would not have been possible without the Bob Davis Scholarship.

“I take this achievement very seriously and appreciate the support given to me in order to make my goals a reality without worrying about the cost of tuition. I will study hard, keep my grades up, participate in the classroom and meet with my professors during office hours for additional help,” she said. “This opportunity will not be wasted in procrastination, defeat or lack of effort. I desire to put this scholarship to good use in order to graduate with honors in the class of 2024.”