Photo Credit: Saeed Ahmad, with permission.

Looking up to worthy role models can make all the difference in a growing teenager’s life. The deepest levels of inspiration are often woven into the success stories of real people with reputable achievements. For Saeed Ahmad, an American entrepreneur and Harvard Law student, Ferrucio Lamborghini’s story provided a great deal of motivation to launch his dreams off a rather sticky pad. Lamborghini was belittled and embarrassed by the words of his rival, Enzo Ferrari. Instead of swallowing the bile and sulking for the rest of his life, he worked exceedingly hard and built an automobile force to be reckoned with.

All through middle school and high school in Corona, California, Ahmad battled unfair stigma and was the object of several negatively-toned identity labels. Grossly underestimated and constantly treated like he didn’t quite belong, Ahmad was just about to graduate high school and proceed to Norco College when another point of shame was birthed by his peers and teachers as he was teased for choosing a “community college”.

“When I stumbled upon Lamborghini’s story, my mindset was changed forever,” Ahmad recounts. “If someone could build such a timeless legacy simply because he was rudely addressed by another fellow, imagine what I, fueled by many years of endless discrimination, could achieve?”

Now 22, the founder and CEO of Shaheen Group, a UCLA Alumni, a multiple Honors Programs member, a Harvard Law Student (class of ‘24), a Client Advisor at the Louis Vuitton Flagship Store on Rodeo Drive, and a member of the American Muslim Bar Association, Ahmad has come an amazingly long way from the little kid who was outlawed and left to battle for a sense of identity. He moves with a strong passion for realizing the actual American dream, one where diversity, inclusion, and justice hold significant importance. His career mission is to be a limitless entrepreneur bridging the gap between law, business, and fashion, and so far, he’s excelled at every step of the plan.

Blazing trails at UCLA Pre-law

The prestigious University of California, Los Angeles, had always been Ahmad’s unwavering college aspiration. Even as he matriculated into Norco Community College in 2016, he was certain that his time at this institution would be a stepping stone to UCLA. Ahmad sunk in a lot of hard work and with assistance from his faculty administrators and instructors, he eventually transferred to UCLA 

“While my admission into UCLA was a great leap into my dreams, they were just starting to unfold,” Ahmad says. “I had to seize the chance to prove what someone like me could achieve at the #1 Public University in the US. While I mostly focused on maintaining my excellent grades, I spent my first year at the University drafting a solid plan for law school. Toward the end of the year, I attempted to get involved with various Pre-law student organizations.” 

Ahmad had tried to join the executive boards of several pre-law students’ organizations, but every single one had turned him down. His ideas were innovative, his goals were unique, his passion was obvious, but he was a transfer student. Transfer students were mostly looked down on, the Lamborghini style, and other students believed they hadn’t stayed long enough to earn places on the important tables.

Again, Ahmad surpassed expectations when he revived the defunct Pre-Law Transfer Society with a couple of fellow students he’d met at a shop. They weren’t just interested in bearing the title of an organization – they wanted to make a solid impact and move a real revolution. The society thrived and grew to a point that students from all over the country were trying to sign up, and Ahmad knew he’d hit the dart’s eye – again.

Ahmad has left the university but had remained a member of the Alumni with a focus on protecting the interests of transfer students, serving as the social media chair of UCLA Transfer Student Alumni Network!

Louis Vuitton, Harvard Law, and an entire future waiting to be explored

We are each the sole authors of our lives’ journeys, and so far, Ahmad has written some pretty impressive chapters in his success story. Right after graduating from UCLA, he was offered a coveted employment opportunity at the Louis Vuitton Flagship Store on Rodeo Drive, California. He became a client advisor to the loyal patrons of one of the most prestigious high-luxury fashion brands in the world.

“My job involves turning what should have ended as a ‘pay, collect, and exit’ transaction into an amicable relationship of trust and loyalty to the brand that can last several years,” Ahmad said as he explained his CA role at Louis Vuitton. “My specialty is gaining rapport with clients and being one of the top-rated client advisors in the entire Maison.”

Having completed his pre-law degree, Ahmad began applying to Law Schools to continue his academic journey. Harvard has always been his first choice, the dream school, and an institution so top-notch that simply applying was a huge privilege. To his utmost amazement, the admission came through in February 2021. 

He described the opportunity as a chance to make an actual mark in society. “I could not help but be grateful to have the platform to promote positive associations of my respective identities.”

At 22 years old, Ahmad still has an entire life ahead of him – and the journey so far is already enough for a legacy. The proud law student is gearing up to move to Cambridge later this year, and from there, he’ll continue his work at blazing a fresh trail of equality and fairness in entrepreneurship. A leader at heart, Ahmad is a proud member of iCON Gen Z Technologies, an innovative mobile app brand seeking to create an online community for young creatives and to bridge the gap between brands and talents.

He has been with the organization since his graduation from UCLA in 2020, collaborating with top Gen-Z talents across music, sports, entertainment, and fashion, among other fields. The catastrophic effects of the pandemic on youth employment rates, especially among the minorities, inspired Ahmad to create his own organization, Shaheen group, in a continued effort to connect young people with talent-seeking corporations.

“As a solution to this harsh reality, I have worked with an iCON team that creates opportunity drops to connect young talent with virtual opportunities across a variety of fields and connect them with top executives and decision-makers in the process. I established the Shaheen Group to serve as a facilitator of both individual and corporate partnerships between Gen-Z talent and employment opportunities. As the CEO, I connected the iCON team to entrepreneurs such as Metta World Peace to exchange resources and serve as facilitators of change and a culture of promoting equity and ownership.”Just recently, Ahmad was installed vice chair at the American Muslim Bar Association where he looks forward to advocating for favorable policies and legislative efforts while showcasing the capabilities of American Muslims in the legal field. Enthusiastic about the future, Ahmad believes that wherever he finds himself, “social justice, entrepreneurship, diversity, and inclusion” will remain his ultimate mission.