Marines engage local youth at MEAC basketball tournament, impart leadership skills

19 Mar 2014 | Lance Cpl. Jacky Fang 4th Marine Corps District

Marines conducted a community outreach program during the 2014 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Basketball Tournament at the Scope Arena in Norfolk, Va. March 12.

The Marine Corps values opportunities like this to connect and interact with the community, as these kids are the future of America and of the Marine Corps.

The program consisted of six groups of children ranging between the ages of 10 and 18. The kids were brought to the Scope Arena to discuss how important marketing their brand is and how the little things can have big impacts.

“The type of people you hang out with and the type of activities that you do, have a direct influence on people’s perception of you,” said Master Sgt. Mark McArthur, diversity chief, Marine Corps Recruiting Command.

The Marine Corps acknowledges this program as a valuable opportunity to put a Marine in front of young people to discuss their experiences.

“There are many Marines who have had similar experiences,” said Cpl. Kimberly Kent, diversity operations clerk, MCRC. “This makes it easier for the children to identify with the Marines and it gives them someone that they can look to for advice and leadership, and that is what the event is all about.”

Some kids were a little confused when the Marines first talked about “marketing your brand,” but it was all understood at the end of the engagement.

“I did not know what he was talking about, but now I see he was saying how to set yourself apart from other people, keep a positive mindset and stay away from negativity,” said Steven Murphy, a student at Norview High School, Norfolk, Va.

The goal of the program was to speak with and possibly change the minds and attitudes of the youth who participated.

“If we reach one of these young people and put them on the path to success by something that we said today we benefit as a nation,” said McArthur.

Unit News
4th Marine Corps District