Week in Review

Monday, June 1, 2020

If you were to ask me what PEP means to me, I wouldn’t know where to begin. I mean it when I say I wouldn’t be where I am today if it were not for PEP. Despite the coronavirus adversity, PEP has been a surprisingly motivational program for me. I love the brotherhood. I am looking forward to what is in store for me with PEP after this difficult time. PEP’s foundation is based on ethics and morals I wish to live the rest of my life by. We are blessed to still be rolling on through this tough time. It makes us dig deep to push through with our faith. We do miss the executives and volunteers and we all know that they miss us too. In light of the hardships of this virus being able to see the executives and be taught via the computer lab is a new experience for all of us.

The fact that our program still runs outside of these walls is quite touching. All of us truly appreciate how much we and the program are valued. On behalf of all of us in the class of Summer ’20, PEP is a life changer. We will continue to live between the wings no matter how tough life gets. Thank you all for everything you do for us and we cannot wait to see everyone once again. Our prayers go out to you, God bless.

Tyler L.  (a.k.a. “Keto Diet”)

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

PEP means a lot to us since this pandemic started. Since this virus, we have unable to continue going to class. We lost the opportunity to receive visits, and there were no executives as well. This has been difficult since we cannot have any events and are unable to meet the executives to get feedback on our businesses. Hopefully, everything will start back up soon, but until then we will stand strong.

Graduation is getting closer, and we all would like to be able to walk the stage. Everyone is still excited about receiving the Baylor certificate in Entrepreneurship. We have been studying and getting our Business Plan Competition pitches ready. We have started to go to the computer lab to watch some of our executives on video. We are ready to get back to our regular class time so that we can have a better opportunity to learn. It is however difficult, since we cannot do anything until they open up the country. It will continue to be tough until people begin to open their businesses and are able to move around and buy food for their families. We will be here and be ready to stand up when the time comes to walk the stage.

Martin L. (a.k.a. “Mexican Yoda”)

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

This pandemic has been a trying time for all of us, but PEP is a brotherhood, and together we have continued to push forward because adversity is a part of life. It is just a minor setback for our major comeback. I am sure that when I say this has only made us stronger as a whole, I can speak for all of us. This has not been an easy time. It has been trying at times. We all have continued to work toward our end goal to complete this program. We continue to stay motivated and no matter the circumstances, we continue to bring each other up.  As they say, “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”

Staying sharp and connected is vital during times like this. Just because the world stops dos not mean we stop grinding here in PEP. Behind these walls, something great is happening. We are transforming inmates and executives in to great MEN. I capitalize men for one reason, and that is because that is what we are all striving towards: to be GREAT MEN. To think like an executive is only a bonus. During this pandemic we have continued to strive for greatness and continue to put together building blocks for a better life. PEP has given all of us hope for a better future alongside each other. Together we are not only inmates, we are friends; we are a support group; and most importantly, we are brothers on a mission to transform our lives and be GREAT MEN.

Ashton L.  (a.k.a. “Pretty Pretty Princess”)

Thursday, June 4, 2020

This Covid-19 pandemic has been extremely taxing on everyone both inside and outside the fence. No one has escaped its grasp completely unscathed. But as we all experience, cope and adapt to this “new normal,” PEP has maintained and continues to be a beacon of hope for those of us within these walls. Cut off from our families, volunteers, executives and even church functions, we have begun to realize just exactly what we are a part of. We are a family – a brotherhood with those we reside with on a daily basis. But the struggle to cope with the enormity of this pandemic and its aftermath has been prevalent within our ranks. We have seen family members afflicted with the virus. Some have been laid off or even lost their jobs. We have all felt the effects, but rather than fall apart in panic or despair, we have sought unity and the camaraderie of our brothers. Rather than shoulder our burdens alone, we have come together and helped shoulder the load together. We have leaned on, loved and encouraged one another through these difficult times. The PEP brotherhood and our Driving Values are alive and well despite Covid-19’s best attempts to disrupt and diminish them both.

We continue to study our material, execute our business plan curriculum and work the fundamentals that encompass the program. This has provided a tremendous boost in our overall morale. As a collective group we are doing our part to keep the PEP spirit, culture and traditions alive until the day we can be united again. Like our state and country, we are resilient and will overcome this virus setback too. In the end, we will come out stronger together.

#PEPstrong

Cavin L. (a.k.a. “Zebra Cakes”)

Expressions                                                                                     

“The sweetest revenge is success.”

~ Vanessa Williams

This quote means so much to me because after coming to prison, the chain of events that followed were intended to do nothing but beat me down and discourage me. But instead, all it did was make me stronger. You see, before coming to prison, I already had aspirations to start my own business because I have always had a desire to do something big, leave a legacy and be known for the positive things I accomplished while on this earth. Upon entering the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, I decided I was going to use this time to better myself. I read every book I could get my hands on that had to do with starting and running my own business. I couldn’t get enough and soon discovered I had a true entrepreneurial passion. I started coming up with all kinds of innovative business ideas. So while prison’s barrage of blows intended to kick me while I was already down, it has instead fueled that fire inside me to succeed.

Joseph L. (a.k.a. “Eeyore”)