Nick Lenyo and dog on front porch of home

Nick Lenyo was 13 years old when he rolled his ankle while playing basketball. The minor injury, however, would reveal a life-changing diagnosis.

 X-rays showed a mass that had been quietly growing for years; he had osteosarcoma — bone cancer. For months, the teenager endured treatment, but he eventually faced a gut-wrenching decision.

“Just for the peace of mind that the cancer was never going to come back, and that they weren’t going to miss a little sliver of the tumor, I thought amputation was the best way to go,” Lenyo said. “I made the decision and never looked back.”

Now 21 years old and a junior studying finance, Lenyo is part of the college’s Fisher Futures program, which is designed to help students gain valuable experience in the investment banking world. Utilizing the same grit and determination that helped him wipe out bone cancer and overcome losing part of his leg seven years ago, Lenyo locked down an internship with Goldman Sachs in New York City that will take place during the summer of 2021.

The process of securing his internship involved a copious amount of preparation, sleepless nights and interviewing with a variety of top organizations. He endured several “super days,” each involving five interviews back-to-back-to-back with various members of a particular organization on the same day.

“It was definitely intense,” Lenyo said. “Afterward, upon receiving three rejections, I started to think, ‘Oh man, am I doing something wrong? I feel like I’m working so hard. Is something going to happen for me?’” 

But he performed well in his interview with Goldman Sachs and earned the coveted internship.

Nick Lenyo headshot
 Nick Lenyo

“It was the greatest feeling in the world when I finally got that call,” he said. “I was amazed at how willing the juniors and seniors at Fisher who have gone through recruiting, held internships and locked down full-time jobs were to take a phone call or meet up for coffee. I really wanted to hear about all their experiences and what they’ve enjoyed about their particular industry or internships.”

But when Lenyo first arrived at Ohio State, finance wasn’t part of the plan; due to his childhood experience with cancer, he wanted to become an oncologist.

“I was a biomedical science student on the pre-med track,” he said. “I did well, but the more and more I thought about it, although it felt like what I should do after what I had been through, it wasn’t something I could see myself being happy doing.”

He turned toward his other lifelong interest: finance. He joined Fisher’s Honors Cohort program and has excelled in business, catching the attention of his professors.

“I did not know anything about Nick Lenyo prior to him scheduling a meeting with me to discuss his interest in the Honors Cohort Program,” said Ty Shepfer, the program’s director. “Nick showed up to the meeting laser-focused and prepared. When Nick left the room, I made a note in my calendar to be on the lookout for his application to the program because I was so impressed with him. This interaction is par for the course with Nick.”

As for his amputation, which is below the knee, Lenyo is optimistic about the future.

“I’m lucky I still have my knee,” he said. “It’s so insane what technology exists and what they can do. I can only imagine by the time I’m 50, 60 years old, what kind of technology they will have then. It’ll be cool to see how that develops.”

The nearer future is a little more nerve-wracking because of COVID-19. He hopes the pandemic is a distant memory by the time his internship with Goldman Sachs kicks off.

“I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I can go to New York City next year,” he said.