Hey whats going on peoples, my name is Femi Lawson I am a 4th  year student at Ryerson University studying criminal justice. I grew up in Jane and Finch, also known as one of the “priority” neighborhoods in the city, so throughout my lifetime I have faced a lot of challenges and adversity that i had to get through. From the age of 15 I made the decision to do all that I can to give back to my community and be recognized as more than just another kid from Jane and Finch. I began volunteering at Black Creek community health centre in the TVPP (teen violence prevention program). This program was to educate youth on difference forms of violence and advocate for better ways of resolving conflict.
In 2006 I graduated from highschool and pursued post secondary education. I was priveledged to have received the “second chance” scholarship of $5000 in my third year of university. This award was for a student who lived in a marginalized community and is involved in doing community work. I have volunteered at several different community agencies and my experiences have helped make me the man I am today .In 2009 group of friends were discussing how the media continuosly stigmatizes our communities in toronto, so we decided to take action and we  created a grassroots organization called “Highclass”.
Our Vision at Highclass is to create an organization that will help empower our unemployed and underemployed community members nationwide. It is our obligation to increase social capital ( social networks), provide support services to help uplift and bring individuals and small businesses to a higher level of success. Highclass helps discover abilities and talents of individuals, and provide them with the resources needed to strive and be the best that they can be.
Along with volunteering I also work with the trimentoring program at Ryerson University. My position there is  a first generation ambassador both on and off campus. I facilitate workshops and discussion groups for various youth on a variety of community issues.
I am very passionate about seeing change happen and in order for that change to occur I believe that we as individuals must do what we can to create that change. I appreciate every opportunity I receive  to work  and volunteer in different communities and I will continue to give back.