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OCLC's Magnanimous Mentors
On most Wednesday afternoons at the Onslow County Learning Center (OCLC) you can tell when retired Marine Major Isaiah Johnson and Colonel Grover Lewis are on campus. “The sights and sounds of camaraderie and building of partnerships are evident between our high school boys and our Magnanimous Mentors,” observes Lorraine Jackson, Social Studies teacher at OCLC. “Major Johnson and Colonel Lewis are two of the several Magnanimous Mentors working with our young men to help give them a positive boost toward their future,” she went on to say.
Major Isaiah (Ike) Johnson created Magnanimous Mentors, all retired Marines, in Onslow County to serve "youth, individual, families, and communities through coaching and mentoring." Assisting students in creating a successful and better future by providing mentorship, self-assessment and leadership training is a main focus for the Magnanimous Mentors group.
During weekly mentoring meetings at OCLC students are coached on life skills, goal setting, good citizenship, how to get a job and how to best present one’s self. “Being a Magnanimous Mentor is special because we get to work with some fantastic young men and we get to impart our life stories with them and, in ways, we get a chance to shape their lives positively much like people once shaped our lives,” said Major Johnson.
Throughout the year students earn the opportunity to participate in a field trip to the Bonnyman Center at Camp Lejeune for an afternoon of team building and social behavior reinforcement through bowling. It is during this less formal time that is most meaningful to student Ramont Clayton. “Hanging out with Colonel Lewis – he’s a pretty cool guy. It’s nice to get a mentor to keep you on the right path, have fun with you-- showing you that everything is not bad. It’s good to talk to somebody, you know, just to have them around.”
The Magnanimous Mentors have volunteered in the Onslow County Learning Center for over six years and have become an integral part of helping students become more focused on a positive and successful future.