Yesterday, I was blessed with the opportunity to visit my high school alma mater, Compton Dominguez High. Wow, it brought me back to the days. I saw myself in a lot of those kids and it brought back a lot of memories of being a teenager. Being in that math class with Mr. Kreutz and his students was especially nostalgic. Mr. Kreutz was hands down one of my most influential teachers I’ve had so it was only right to pay a visit to him and his class. I have to admit, my math is a little rusty but thankfully there were some math wizards to help me through some of those math problems. I loved being there and interacting with the class, it made me feel like a kid again where all my focus was poured into getting good grades, football, and having a good time with friends and family.
I can only hope that the students received my message that day. I wanted to let them know that they will face challenges at some point in life, but if they use their intelligence and intuition, they can get past these problems and come out a better person. If you put in the work, put in the time, put in the effort, you’re going to reap the benefits. These are some smart kids and I believe in each and every one of them. You know, I was fortunate to have a loving and supporting family. They had a huge role in my life, molding the path I was on. They directed my moral compass and let me know the rights and wrongs in life. They showed me, and continue to show me, that hard work pays off.
Some of these kids aren’t as fortunate though. That’s why I do these visits. I want them to know that I care about them and their future and more importantly that their teachers care about them. I want them to know that if they are dealt with a less than ideal life circumstance that they can get out and do big things, that there is hope, that they don’t have to rely on the streets to get them through.
At the end of the day, it’s about the kids. It’s about keeping them inspired and motivated. I hope that I have a positive impact on them, because when it comes down to it, they absolutely have a positive impact on me.