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Actions speak louder than words. Perhaps we've heard this so often that our understanding of its true potential has been dulled. Fortunately, there is Bewhoyouwanna be, an example of what action can do in the lives of children. It began as a simple request for a public service campaign, but during the process, it forced us all to realize that improving a child's future calls for action, not an ad.

Bewhoyouwanna be hosts events that bring successful individuals from various fields into neighborhoods where hope and inspiration are hard to come by, and invites youth to envision themselves in their favorite profession. During the events, students are given the opportunity to meet and pair with a career mentor. This one-on-one interaction is the catalyst for an extended relationship designed to show children there is more within their grasp than the life of a dropout. It also gives children insight into their desired profession, the tools they will need to become successful and the reason why staying in school is not an option, but a requirement.

Created in conjunction with the Birmingham Police Department and Birmingham ad agency, o2ideas, Bewhoyouwanna be is one of the educational tools established under The Mattie C. Stewart Foundation, a non-profit established by Dr. Shelley Stewart to support education and reduce the national dropout rate.

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