Sheldon Rappaport

I so remember coming to Tech for the entrance exam. Walking into that amazing building and then into the auditorium. I was somewhat shy and a good student in elementary school. I remained so for the first half of my freshman year in Tech.


I don’t know what changed me, but I became disruptive in most of my classes and a class clown.
Constantly in trouble, but I didn’t receive any detention until the last half of my senior year. The offense: cutting a lunch line and threatening an SOS lieutenant. Mr. Starr held a kangaroo court and I spent the next five mornings in detention with Big Sid. I did not cut the lunch line that day, but many other days, yes, I did!

The result of my “fun” was being second to last in my graduating class. I must add that I was top in my chemistry, geometry, and American history classes. We had lots of drafting at Tech, especially in the Mechanical Engineering major.

My first job was as a draftsman for the largest custom sheet-metal fabricator in New York City. I spent two years there and then went on to a laboratory equipment manufacturer for another year. I left both jobs out of boredom. My third job lasted from 1959 to 1988. I continued as a design draftsman for the fledgling semi-trailer truck body manufacturer. We had about sixty employees at the time. I am proud to say that I became a branch VP at age 28, executive VP at age 41, and president at 43. During my tenure, we were one of the top five trailer manufacturers in the country, with 2,300 employees in four states. I left the company at age 49 due to issues with our parent company.

I continued on as an independent sales representative for a former competitor for 15 very successful years. I owe my success to many teachers. Special thanks to Mr. Wood, Mr. Seigel, Mrs. Stonehill, and many of my other teachers. Mostly……