Student Shehzad Ziaee wearing a camera replica on his mortarboard.

Student Shehzad Ziaee wearing a camera replica on his mortarboard.
Image Credit: Ken Ruinard, Anderson Independent Mail

When graduate student Shehzad Ziaee arrived in Clemson from his home in Hyderabad, India he was already a photography enthusiast but had never used a digital single-lens reflex (DLSR) camera before.

On his first day in Clemson, he found himself in the library talking with library security coordinator, Walter Wilson. “Mr. Walter gave me some insight about the equipment available for students in the library,” said Ziaee.

Cooper Library currently has over thirty cameras, plus lenses, flashes, tripods and other equipment for students, faculty, and staff to check out.

At first, Ziaee only borrowed simple point and shoot cameras, but he quickly discovered the DSLR cameras. He began to experiment with them and soon his photos were so good that his friends encouraged him to submit them to the yearbook. The next semester, he became Sports Editor for TAPS.

“After I was appointed Sports Editor, I borrowed DSLR cameras almost every weekend to shoot campus events. I was offered a sideline pass for all the football games, the ACC Championship game, the Orange Bowl, and the Natty, which I happily checked off my bucket list,” said Ziaee.

Student Shehzad Ziaee with library staff members, Cassie Thomas and Maggie Smith.
Image Credit: Shehzad Ziaee

“Everyone at the Library Services desk made checking out equipment easy and was so helpful when I had questions. It was a joy to interact with library staff.” Ziaee showed his appreciation for the Libraries by visiting with us, writing us a thank you note, and of course taking photos with some of his favorite staff members.

He also celebrated his love of photography at graduation. “On my graduation day, I decided to mount a replica of a DSLR camera on my graduation hat.”

Ziaee came to Clemson to get a master’s degree but he left having taken 192,340 photographs and becoming a lifetime member of the Clemson family. “I will take immense pride in being a Clemson Tiger for the rest of my life.”

Shehzad Ziaee is a 2015 graduate of Clemson with a Master’s degree in Structural Engineering.