Week in Review
Monday August 6, 2018
This is our third week in Toastmasters, and we have seen men, young and old, express their feelings and tell personal and professional stories about the trials they’ve encountered in their lives. All have inspired each of us to want to become better men and to look at others differently. These experiences in Toastmasters are teaching us to speak in front of people and learn how to present ourselves verbally.
We have all been blessed to be in this class, because this course would cost us thousands of dollars on the outside. We all should appreciate and take full advantage of this opportunity and get all we can get from it. So Fearless Fall ’18, keep up the good work and let’s do what we know is right and step up to the plate!
Carlton L. (a.k.a. “Ghetto Punch”)
Tuesday August 7, 2018
We at PEP started out the day with enthusiasm by ushering Spring ’19 off to the PEP classroom, where they had their interviews with in-house management. This gave us, the Fearless Fall ’18 class, a much-needed opportunity to go over some of our study material on Chapter 11 for our upcoming test covering marketing strategies.
Immediately after the dayroom had cleared out, we put together a mock pitch presentation panel and began giving pitches to one another for the Venture Capital Panel event scheduled this Saturday. The morale among us is set to a high standard, and we are all so excited. We are very prepared, and even though we are not looking to compete with each other or at the expense of the classes that preceded us, we are determined to make a lasting impression on every soul within earshot.
Here at PEP, we are focused on business day and night. At any given moment, you can hear someone giving a pitch about his business in the hall, on the recreation yard, in the dining area or even in the line at the commissary store. Entrepreneurship does not end in the classroom for us at PEP; it is a way of life!
Timothy N. (a.k.a. “Red Hot”)
Wednesday August 8, 2018
Today was quite a big day for us. We have Bert S.’s (a.k.a. “Chocolate Truffles”) class every Wednesday, where Bert S. teaches us entrepreneurship and all aspects of it from experience and also from our textbook, Entrepreneurship. His classes are extremely fascinating and beneficial to all of us.
Today we took a test over the chapter Bert went over last week about marketing, which entailed quite a bit. It was definitely the hardest test we’ve taken to date, but I’m excited to say this was the first test that no one got a zero on!
Bert also switched gears today, and instead of teaching on entrepreneurship, he gave everyone a chance to do their Venture Capital Panel pitch in front of the class. He gave all of us some exceptional feedback. We’re all excited for our event coming up on Saturday, and we’re getting great practice for pitch day!
Duane A. (a.k.a. “My Little Pony”)
Thursday August 9, 2018
Man, today was another long day, but it was totally worth it. We started the day off with one of the hardest things that most of us have ever experienced in our lives: learning about the Economics of One Unit (a.k.a. “EOUs”). Richard S. (a.k.a. “Gomer Pyle”) was teaching the class, and I’m pretty sure he could see the bewilderment on every single one of our faces. Thank God for the amazing Servant-Leaders we have within our pods. They showed us individually how to find out our EOUs within the word problems. Now we are proficient and can do them on our own.
The next part of our day was spent inside of our luxurious computer lab. While there, we used computers most of us haven’t touched in the last three years. The computer lab really gives us a feeling of independence. Most of us like to hang out there from time to time. The assignments are self-paced, and if we need help, once again, those amazing Servant-Leaders are there to assist us.
PEP is really transforming our lives for the best!
Lemar M. (a.k.a. “Wayman”)
Friday August 10, 2018
Today’s class started off with a bang. That bang happened to be a history test. The whole class was worried, because we didn’t know what was going to be on it. Thankfully, the test was easy, because the majority of the class studied for it. That’s what Fearless Fall ’18 does though; we study, prepare and then execute.
Our next goal was to enter the world of Living in the Village. This course is designed to open our thought patterns to fiscal responsibility. That involves us learning how to manage our money. Topics ranged from household budgeting to smart financial investing. The whole class is looking forward to becoming much smarter with our decisions when it comes to how we spend our money.
Before we left, they showed us a video featuring Ryan Mack. Ryan is the creator and founder of Living in the Village. He spoke very highly of PEP and encouraged us to continue to move forward. With support from people like Ryan, all of us in Fearless Fall ’18 can definitely achieve our goals.
Alfredo V. (a.k.a. “McFlurry”)
Saturday August 11, 2018
Today was our Venture Capital Panel event. We have all been working extremely hard to perfect our first pitches, which were presented to a panel of executives. The anticipation up to this morning does not even compare to the nervousness that everyone seems to be full of. It’s “go time”!
Everyone did an amazing job delivering their pitches to the executives. It’s hard to explain the nervous feeling we developed, but it was definitely felt by all of us. Once all of us had given our pitches, you could see and feel the weight being lifted from our shoulders. It was a great experience.
The executives provided us with some great feedback. All of us realize that we were provided with very useful insights which will be used to improve our business plans. Overall, it has been a great day for everyone involved in the Prison Entrepreneurship Program.
Andrew S. (a.k.a. “Charmin Bear”)
“Strength does not come from winning. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
This program is difficult. It’s meant to be. The reason it gets so much recognition is that it’s a challenging experience. Changing your life and pushing yourself is never easy, so embrace it. We only get stronger from the challenge, and let’s face it, the world is a difficult place. If it were easy, then we wouldn’t be here. We need to grow stronger.
With the increased work load of late, you just have to decide what you need to do versus what you want to do. Of course, everyone wants to hang out, watch T.V., go to recreation or anything else to get their minds off of prison, but what we should be doing is working on ourselves or studying for something productive for when we get out. That is essentially what time management is: taking care of the things you need to do first. Then, whatever time you have left is for you!
So brothers, you may ask yourselves, is all this worth the effort? Of course it is! You can’t give in when life challenges you. You can’t allow it to break you. We were selected for this program because we’re winners, we have heart and we’re determined to turn our lives around. So push forward, Fearless Fall ’18! Wait until you see how proud your families and your fellow PEP brothers are of you on graduation day.
Timothy D. (a.k.a. “Ren”)