Choosing the right path can be crucial because it can create a depiction of the person we are and have an ultimate effect on the person we want to be. For some, choosing a path may come easy, for it is led by the breadcrumbs of having a wealthy family, stable financial abilities, and excellent resources. For others, the path may not be so delineated like the “yellow brick road.” This is where the challenge in making these decisions exist. Within inner cities, the pathway is filled with potholes, police sirens, street violence, and at times, life or death decisions where one’s back is against the wall. Waking up to the news of minority discrimination, and the increase of poverty is the reality most citizens are faced with and what the youth is up against. Due to restricted funds in the school system, students are deprived of the necessary materials and technology needed to obtain a proper education. Children who are fighting to expand their means are not given a fighting chance because of limited materials and unavailable resources. Without the right supplies and motivation in the academic environment, students begin to grow despondent before exploring their full potential, and before you know it, it can falter to one of the many obstacles that exist in their pathway.
The pressure on the inner city can become immense. A failed system that historically has oppressed those in the inner cities can make the proper path cloudy, and in many cases, nonexistent. This murky pathway combined with a diminished depiction of minority doctors, scientists, lawyers, and other professionals that represent their same background, causes the youth to open their eyes to a path that on the surface appears to be a faster, more natural, and more realistic route to the sustainability that all Americans seek. Despite the hurdles, obstacles, and mechanisms that operate to derail inner-city youth, people somehow still create their own path. If there is not an example out there to follow, one individual must lead the way, and Byron J. Abron was determined to be that one.
Byron “B.J.” Abron grew up in the city of Compton, California. While living in a household of five and having two sisters, B.J. was no stranger to the street rigors that many young African American males faced growing up in Compton. Although he was enticed by the hustle and flow that surrounded him, B.J. wanted to become more than what social stereotypes projected his limitations to be. Social stereotypes portray that most African American males mainly gain success by becoming athletes and rap artists. By limiting their talents and hindering their chances, young men begin to believe that those are the only options they have at succeeding. From the Streets of Compton to the Civil Courtroom, B.J. met up with Boss Mann to share his journey in following his true passions and how it led him on the path to becoming a lawyer.
Late-night trial prep was not what this Boss Mann first saw himself doing. Before applying for law school, B.J. worked in several fields and is what he attributes to helping him find his passion. “Most people jump straight out of high school, go to college, and are a hundred thousand dollars in debt for a degree they’ll never use. Why? I tell my nephew all the time to explore, explore, and explore.” Abron shared. After High school B.J. developed a knack for branding and marketing. While pursuing a degree in Sociology and Business Marketing, B.J. simultaneously began to work in the field of fashion design. After he finished undergrad and working for a well-known fashion entity, B.J. started to take an interest in the field of Information Technology, where he worked for the City of Los Angeles for several years. It turns out that on the search for his profession, B.J. used the method of narrowing down his likes and dislikes to discover his true passion. When it came down to it, he learned that his genuine interest was helping others. Being able to represent those in their time of need and fighting for justice inspired him to become a civil trial attorney. Becoming an attorney gave him the ability to do more for not just himself, but for the people in his community, however, the path to his dream was not an easy walk. B.J. soon came to realize what sacrifices he would need to make to transform himself into the man he wanted to be.
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