CT State Gateway Alumni Inaugurated as Poet Laureate of New Haven Inspiring Success: From Farnam Court to the Voice of the Community

Meet Sharmont “Influence” Little, a native of New Haven, and Gateway alumnus whose story embodies the spirit of hope, perseverance, and community impact.

Raised in the Farnam Court housing projects, Little’s trajectory changed when he discovered his passion for poetry. The medium through which today he inspires and uplifts the youth of New Haven.

Navigating a not-always-straight course through the educational landscape, Little pursued his studies at New Haven public schools, CT State Community College Gateway, and Goodwin College and Lincoln Technical Institute. He faced challenges along the way and became a registered nurse.

But Little’s journey didn’t stop there. Driven by his commitment to advocate and serve, he emerged a prominent figure in Connecticut’s slam poetry scene. “Influence” represented the region’s talent on a national stage.

Beyond poetry, Influence has lent his voice to meaty social issues. He advocated for workers’ rights and served as a beacon of empowerment for the New Haven community.

As the founder of Influence a Life LLC, Little continues to make a difference. stands as a shining example of what can be achieved through determination, education, and a commitment to service. His journey reminds us of the boundless potential within each of us and the transformative power of education to shape lives and communities.

Feeling influenced by Little’s story? Join the Gateway Alumni Network and help transform lives of Gateway students and the Greater New Haven community.

Click here to join or donate today.

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