Did you have dreams and aspirations when you were younger? Did they include being wealthy, famous, married with 3.5 kids and a beautiful mansion? Or was your life goal to be a drug dealer? That sounds tragic; however, 17-year-old Jaylen Bledsoe had someone tell him that being a drug dealer was, in fact, his goal in life. It makes one wonder what the support system was like in the home of that teenager, what he was exposed to, did he even know that he could be better. That teen would have been a perfect candidate to work with the mentors at the Baltimore School that I previously mentioned in a post.
Bledsoe however saw the background of the other teen and noted the lack of support, and that “[…] (it) was the community, the drug dealer. That’s where he saw success. He saw drug-dealing as the (reason) they have the cars they have, the money they have, the women they have.” When you really sit down and look at the situation, you understand that those children believe that drug dealing is the easy way out, without realizing that there are prisons and correctional facilities full of people, not much older than they are, who had the same dreams and beliefs.
Bledsoe was 14 when he designed a website and the Jaylen D. Bledsoe Global Group, which is a company that helps to specialize in brand expansion consulting.
His company deals with business development, venture capital funding, direct marketing strategies, and other entrepreneurial enterprises. He has had much success in his ventures, so he decided that helping others who haven’t been as exposed or are less fortunate than him was a great way to use his talents and skills.
Therefore, he created the Young Entrepreneur University
, “A program for teenagers where he would teach student who have not been heavily exposed to entrepreneurship the concepts and fundamental of building a business based on the idea of innovating for people.” This is a lofty goal; however it’s one that any parent, teacher, or student can appreciate. Here is someone who is not planning on leaving others his same age in the dust; he wants to help them succeed as well.
His goals have been well defined as “If I can use my story to motivate, inspire, and push a young person who may be lost in life, then that’s my purpose”. A fun fact that would have many running for the hills is that his business manager, Wilmer Jackson-Spencer, is 37-years-old. At 20 years his senior, Jackson-Spenser stated that Bledsoe is focused and very clear about what he wants. He also limits his access to social media and trips out because he is just that private.
He also has a mindset that many teenagers, and adults, should concentrate on. He lives well below his means, drives a used Nissan Altima, and does not discuss his finances because “[…]the focus on money subtracts from his works and gives the false impression that money rules his life.” In fact, he was upset about an article that labeled him as a teenage millionaire. He felt it took away from the real focus.
As you read about this teenager, who isn’t even legally allowed to vote yet, you may think, “Wow, he has it all.” But we have to remember that he is still in high school. Nevertheless, his advice speaks volumes.
I’ll leave you with a final note from Bledsoe: “[…] we all get a dream. But the difference between the successful dreamers and not-successful dreamers is that the successful dreamer takes God’s dream and acts on it.”
(This story originally found at The Indianapolis Recorder )