There are many ways to advance diversity education. It is not all through classroom instruction but also through personal life modeling. The article today in the Washington Post “Back on his feet, he reaches back” shows a dedicated ex felon Tony Vinson who made it back from the streets after stating he was ready, done with the criminal life and just plain tired. He is now a recruiter and trainer for ex felons, homeless, and other challenged individuals; giving them a chance at a life that includes education, training, referrals, and jobs at the DC Central Kitchen. People like Mr. Vinson and others like him who educate and demonstrate for others that life is not a series of hopeless events or accepted victim mentality are what this country needs to combat the perpetual cycle of poverty and crime. It is also one other small key that opens large doors for diversity awareness.
By advancing one’s education and providing opportunities they never knew (or wanted) existed, so many will break free from their own biases and work toward becoming productive and not destructive members of society. This goes for all races, ethnicities, and backgrounds who are caught in this tangled web with their lifestyle choices; many since birth.
Role models can be powerful engines for education whether it be life or academic. When role modeling combines both like Mr. Vinson does, it is a nearly unbeatable combination for someone’s future.
I applaud Mr. Vinson for his decision,courage and dedication!