The goal is to create a situation for yourself that enables you to take care of family and reach back into the community to spread knowledge, provide opportunity, and be a living, working example of hope and possibility.
It’s clear that Detroit rapper Big Sean is following that blueprint. In partnership with his mother, Myra Anderson, the “I Decided” artist has been using his influence to launch initiatives that uplift Detroit and also pour into the aspirations and educational endeavors of youth, via their Sean Anderson Foundation.
And the work continues. Sean and his mother have now created Mogul Prep, an education initiative aligned with the music industry to help young students develop a proper career path in a variety of fields. In 2015, Sean gave the program a test run in his hometown and it proved to be a success, with 300 Detroit students participating.
This go round, to amplify promotional efforts for the project, Sean will embark on a five-city tour to encourage kids to consider a career in the entertainment industry. The performances kick off April 1 and will feature industry veterans who will offer experienced knowledge and provide insight to excel in the realm of entertainment and music.
In an interview with Billboard, Sean noted that the inspiration to jump start Mogul Prep came naturally.
“My mom was a teacher, that was one of the many things that she’s done in her life. Mogul Prep was an idea that we started from the end of 2015, right when I did a homecoming show in Detroit. It was a monumental point in my career. It was a crazy night, but right after that, we did the first Mogul Prep event with the [Sean Anderson] foundation, and we had people who worked on my team who helped a lot with the show from my production manager to the sound guys to my publisher, publicist, and creative directors — all these different people who had something to do with me, got a chance to meet up with all these high school kids and we saw how effective it was. It’s me on the stage, but there’s about 30 other people who are working for me to be on that stage.”
He added, “All I wanted to be was a musician but if I had known these kind of things, who would have known the possibilities for me and my crew around me, and what we could have done to take it further? I know the unemployment rates are super high in Detroit, especially for the young ones. We’re trying to really help that out and give them clear career paths that are needed, and that they probably have natural talents for.”
In addition to the youth focus, the Anderson’s also have sights set on parental involvement.
“We’ve been actually talking about doing some workshops with parents because students’ success is predicated on adult participation,” Ms. Anderson noted in the interview. “Parents want to do the best that they can for their kids and so many of them just don’t know how or what to do so if we can break that cycle, then I think that it’ll move our society forward by leaps and bounds. Parents are a real important part and we are going to address that aspect too.”
We salute Big Sean, his mother and the entire Sean Anderson Foundation for reaching back into the city of Detroit and beyond to encourage youth to strive for excellence.