Monday, October 7, 2019

Today was a glorious day in the world of PEP! We came together to complete our last Toastmasters class for Fall ’19. We have shown tremendous growth in the program and as individuals. We spoke on Servant-leader Mentality and what it means to us. We are thoroughly impressed by each other, primarily because of our depth of growth.

We have come so far on the PEP journey. More importantly, we have accomplished this together as brothers. We have grown together as men and we have learned together as fathers. We have come to the point where victory is imminent, and we can taste it! Bring on Graduation!        

Shane G. (a.k.a. “Richard Simmons”)

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Thank God for another blessed day of life, for His grace sustains us through the night. Every day is a new adventure here in our PEP community. We strive toward change every minute of the day. Our minds are renewed by changing our attitude, the way we think, and by putting into action all the tools PEP offers us.

Robert Lewis’ Authentic Manhood class helps us recognize some core issues in our lives. Although they hurt as they rise to the surface, we are there for one another as brothers in prayer and encouragement. Other classes that we participate in involve Microsoft Office lessons, which vary from Excel to PowerPoint. Each of these lessons have been very helpful when it comes to preparing our business plans. We also have awesome Servant-leaders who go out of their way to help us throughout our journey. God bless!

Bernardo V. (a.k.a. “Jason Statham”)

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Beckon the call, Kings of Fall! Guided by infinite wisdom, previous classes have passed the torch on to us, and we stood in the midst of triumph. As the fog was lifted from our eyes, a truer form of reality was revealed. All of us were exiled to this foreign land of concrete and steel where we refined our impurities in the furnace. Some of us didn’t like what we found and dropped like flies. In the end, we showed up tried and true – it’s always roughest for the toughest. Those of us who toughed it out reaped the rewards of the Prison Entrepreneurship Program.

This morning the Servant-Leader meeting went well. The long line for coffee indicated that we had a good turnout of people. We watched a movie that had some appropriately scary Halloween scenes. We have a very skilled media team that does a spectacular job with the camera and recording equipment. Some of the Servant-Leaders discussed their positions and how they would like volunteers to help. Afterwards, we prayed-out some brothers who will be leaving the Cleveland Unit to pursue endeavors elsewhere. We wrapped up the morning’s events with a practice run of our graduation ceremony. We looked a little rough, but practice makes perfect.

There was an entrepreneurial extravaganza this afternoon with the Fall ’19 class in the PEP classroom when a business pitch battle took place between four groups. It was tense, and the atmosphere was heated like a wire coil. The winners won clout along with bragging rights. The losers had to hit the floor and do 30 push-ups. Everyone in attendance witnessed legendary speaking prowess that shall not soon be forgotten.

Ian V. (a.k.a. “Ben Stein”)

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Fall ’19 is preparing for the Business Plan Competition (BPC) that is creeping up on us slowly. The business plan editors must make sure everyone’s paperwork is in order. Today that meant printing out the finalized business plans in their entirety and making them presentable. We want the business plans to be as professional in appearance as possible. That way, whenever each of our PEP brothers hands his to the executives, he can smile and be confident in what he is showing them.

Working as a business plan editor is rewarding in the sense that we get to see the transformation of our PEP brothers as it unfolds. At times, we don’t even realize how much we have changed, because the change occurs so slowly. Looking back, we have seen drastic improvements since the beginning. We are confident in the strong, professional men that we have become. We are ecstatic even thinking about the BPC and Graduation. We also joined the men of Spring ’20 for their Fun Day and had a blast! Altogether, today was a fulfilling day!  

Michael M. (a.k.a. “Jim Adler, The Hammer”)

Friday, October 11, 2019

On Friday mornings, the entire Fall 2019 class is summoned to the PEP room at approximately 8 a.m. so we can continue to practice and critique our business plan pitches, as well as rehearse for the graduation ceremony. We continue to grow and to better ourselves along with our business pitches. Our confidence in our abilities increases exponentially with each practiced pitch. The more we practice our pitches, the more professionally presented and easily comprehended they will be to the executives the day of our Business Plan Competition (BPC) event. It is said that chance favors a prepared mind, and with practice comes perfection; indeed, a particularly wise and appropriate saying.

Our goal is to exhibit the very best accounting of our business pitches, as well as to present to our potential investors our best possible depictions of our true, business-minded, entrepreneurial and professional selves during the BPC. Now that we have begun practicing for our graduation ceremony, it is both exciting and overwhelmingly apparent that we have nearly completed our rigorous, comprehensive entrepreneurial training. We are now fully prepared to return to society as successful, professional, entrepreneurial businessmen.

Fridays are days when we diligently continue to improve and master our pitches in order to strive to rank in the top four in the BPC, if not the top spot.   

Garrett E. (a.k.a. “60 Days In”)

Expressions

“We few, we happy few, we band of brothers.”

                                                                                                                ~William Shakespeare  

We stand here today as a brotherhood. A collection of former troublemakers and misfits from so many different walks of life. We all have a true second chance, thanks to PEP, no matter our past. We are on the trip of a lifetime, to transform, instead of knuckling under like we have in the past.

The hands-on experience PEP offers when it comes to market research, public speaking and mingling with executives during events has brought out intensely powerful and exciting new prospects to all of us here. The selfless gifts of knowledge, skills and personal life experiences given so freely are a hand up to help change our lives for the better.

As you read this, smile and remember we are still your Sons, Brothers, Fathers or Grandfathers – only new and improved, forged through the fire which birthed us into this brotherhood.  

William J. (a.k.a. “Caveman”)

Kings of Fall ’19