Giving truth to Memphis youth
By Desmond Catron (K.I.P.P)
When I approached my school one Friday a few weeks back, the first thing I saw was a huge police SWAT car sitting in front of the school. Two policemen, dressed in all-black, greeted my friends and me as they jumped out. It was career day at KIPP and it seemed like we were in for a thrill.
Career Day teaches us what career opportunities we can get our hands on and the people who have those careers already teach us what steps to take so we can do what they’re doing in the future.
From nurses to firemen, the hallways of the school bustled with different scrubs, uniform, and suits. Throughout the day, I encountered lawyers, accountants and musicians; it was a great experience to meet so many people with different talents and attributes. Of all of the people that spoke with me three presenters imprinted on my heart forever.
Two of my favorite professionals I met that day were two firefighters named Mrs. Strong and Mr. Little. Since they are both from our neighborhood, they could relate to us. They told us about the extremities of being a firefighter.
Mr. Little said, “Everyday presents a challenge. In basic training, you have to run three miles, drag a 150 pound dummy and do 100 pushups and sit ups.”
They talked about how there are so many opportunities in our world today that we should take advantage of. Although their job is to put out fires, they ignited my motivation inside. Another person I learned a lot from during the event was John Bruce from Chicago. Bruce had a rough time coming out of high school, dropped out, then went back and got his family. Due to his environment, being successful was hard.
Bruce is now a senior human resources manager and said what motivated his success was, “More funerals than marriages. I had a wakeup call. If I want something out of life, it’s up to me to decide. Life is about getting things pushed on you and how you react to them.”
What I took from Career Day is that no matter what you do, in order to become successful in life, you have to work hard and be diligent in your work. One trait I noticed with all the professionals was that they had to apply themselves and sacrifice something to get to where they are today.
No matter what obstacles come in life, know what you are fighting for. Make every action you take one to help you reach your goals.