Early in life, Jerrell experienced the violence of the streets. He was shot and stabbed on the same day, which almost cost him his life. Jerrell grew up blinded by his environment; he thought that life could be nothing more than what was in front of him.
Through his work with the Boston Youth Service Network (BYSN), Jerrell realized he had the power, potential, and resources to do anything he wanted to do. Jerrell was connected to a mentor, obtained his GED, took college prep classes, and transitioned into college in one year.
Jerrell has stayed focused and followed the guidance of his mentors and advisers, which led to the work that he does today. Jerrell now leads the Youth Council of the Boston Youth Service Network, the same Network he joined as a youth member two years ago. The BYSN is part of the Social Innovation Fund’s Jobs for the Future/Opportunity Works grant, which seeks to improve education and career outcomes for youth disconnected from school or work.
Jerrell truly believes in youth empowerment and leadership as he has seen the changes they brought in his life. He hopes to make that difference in the lives of young people around him.