Joey Bada$$ taps a powerful roster to provide free mentorships to men of color
Actor and rapper Joey Bada$$, formally known as Jo-Vaughn Virginie Scott, is giving back to the culture with his newest venture.
“I’m excited to announce that I’ve been silently working on a free mentorship program for men of color in the US [and] Puerto Rico called @impactmentorship,” he wrote in an Instagram post announcing the program. “I recruited an impressive network of incredible mentors in the areas of art, culinary, fashion, film/TV, media, music, and sports.”
The rapper was inspired by his participation in his friend Sophia Chang’s mentorship program, Unlock Her Potential, which supports women of color. He decided to work not only as ImpactMENtorship’s founder but also as a mentor in the initiative.
“When I saw the impact we had on [the Unlock Her Potential] mentees, I knew I wanted to create something similar for men of color who could benefit from the knowledge and experience of industry experts,” he revealed in a statement to Afrotech. “When I lectured at Harvard and NYU years ago, I was moved by the curiosity and enthusiasm I saw in the students. ImpactMENtorship is proud to offer one-on-one guidance to anyone who qualifies, regardless of education level.”
A study by the Brookings Institution revealed that “Black men have the highest unemployment rates of any race/gender group, and the lowest labor force participation and employment rates among men.” With the mentorship of industry pioneers like fashion designer Tremaine Emory and NBA star Jaylen Brown, ImpactMENtorship hopes to bridge this gap by providing career guidance and instilling the confidence needed to excel in any industry. Following the ethos of Unlock Her Potential, “Imagine what 12 hours could do,” accepted mentees will receive one-hour, one-on-one sessions with their mentors every month for a year.
“Due to the high profile of our mentors, we anticipate significant demand for the program,” Joey Bada$$ advised on Instagram. “To increase your chances of matching with your chosen mentor, we strongly encourage all applicants to carefully research the program and mentors, prepare your application in advance, and submit early.”
Applications open at 12 p.m. ET on Oct. 15 and close on Oct. 29 at 12 p.m. ET. According to the program’s website, to qualify, applicants must be 18 years or older and must identify as men of color, which includes “cis, trans, non-binary, gender non-conforming, gender-expansive, and gender-fluid people.”
For more details, visit www.impactmentorship.org
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