For the second year in a row, we were glad to welcome poet Brandon Graham and musician Jesse Boykins III to our campus this past Friday.
Brandon, who knows Admissions Director Sheila Bogan from their college years at Sacred Heart University, is currently a poet and PhD candidate at Columbia University.
Jesse Boykins III is a singer and composer. He recently returned from a tour in Europe, has also been seen on BET’s Soul Train and “New Artists to Watch” segments this past year.
Brandon and Jesse gave a morning meeting presentation, describing their life journeys and the nature of their work, and then stayed on throughout the entire school day. All English classes went to the Recital Hall for open discussions about literature, education, music, the publishing industry, how to “make it,” what books to read, the sources of inspiration for poetry and music, and many other topics. Jesse and Brandon urged all of the students to try many new things, discover what they love, and follow their passions no matter what. “Be unreasonable, be weird!” Brandon exhorted one group, describing the power in embracing your idiosyncrasies and pushing the limits of any given structure or situation. Brandon and Jesse’s lives and work were inspiring, and their message of “Dream Big” resonated with all of us.