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My name is Jesse Lewis. I started attending the youth programs at EOYDC when I was about 15 years old. I first learned about the center through a friend that worked here, and I have been coming back ever since. When I was 16, I started working at EOYDC as a youth tutor while I was attending Castlemont High School. I worked at the center until graduation. While working at the Center, I learned a whole lot of valuable life skills, such as how to communicate with people, how to present myself to people and other things of that nature.
I am currently 21 years old and attending Chabot Community College. I am studying computer science in order to achieve my career goal as a computer technician. I am also working at Sears as a Commissioned Sales Associate. I feel that I learned all of my skills that I use everyday from the Center. I am very grateful that I have been pointed in the right direction from my elders and peers. I feel that if I didn’t have anywhere to go when I was bored, I would not be where I am today. I would rather come to the Center and be bored than go stand out on someone’s street corner and get shot.
EOYDC is like my second home; I have made lifetime friends here. If I didn’t have these friends, I would probably be very misguided by other peers. I am thankful that Ms. Regina Jackson gave me a chance to make money and learn how to make more money as I grow older and more mature. I would point any young person in the direction of 82nd and International Blvd. if they said they needed a place that they could hang out and be safe. The environment here is very real and there is nothing fake about it; everyone there will be real with you and not sugarcoat things. That is what makes the Center such a good environment to me because you will never get misleading advice.
Thank you EOYDC for developing me into the African American man I am today.