Thousands of Bay County middle schools learned some life-lessons today from a man who's walked in their shoes.
For 25 years, Dr. Adolph Brown has traveled the country, speaking to kids about bullying, drugs, and peer pressure.
Brown uses his own background to shape his message.
More than 3,000 Bay County middle school students, teachers, and staff pulled up to the Marina Civic Center today to hear from Dr. Adolph Brown.
Senior Health Educator of the Florida Health Department, Krista Cogburn, says, "I love his messages about healthy relationships. It's just something that isn't taught very often. Not only does he touch on the health aspects, but he brings in the emotional component."
Brown was raised by a single mother, had an absent father, a brother murdered at a young age.
Despite the obstacles, he earned a doctorate degree and became the Head of Psychology at Hampton University.
He uses his own past as an "at-risk" child to teach others about overcoming adversity .
Dr. Adolph Brown says, "They're going to learn that perfection is a disease. They're going to learn about something called excellence, and all that means is competing against yourself and being better than you were."
Senior Health Educator of the Florida Health Department, Krista Cogburn, says, "One of the things that he points out is that if you're the smartest person in your clique, then you need to get a new clique. And a lot of kids need to hear that!"
This is brown's second trip to bay county, during a 5-year sabbatical, teaching kids to take control of their lives.
Dr. Brown says, "The time that i no longer get nervous, that'll be the time that I stop doing this. I still get excited about it, I still get nervous. I still have to take quiet time before to kind of collect my thoughts."
Dr. Brown is booked for the next 2 years spreading his message of "If it is to be, then it's up to me."
The Bay County School District partnered with the Health Department to host today's event.