Q & A With Dr. Marcus Arrington
Dr. Marcus Arrington
PHOTOGRAPHY: STUDIO ONE
WORDS BY: FELLAS STAFF
Besides serving as a public school educator, MARCUS IS the founder of the Young, Anointed and Empowered Project, an initiative designed to engage teens and young adults in critical analysis, reflection, dialogue, and action so they can transform their environment and world.
FELLAS: What's your motivation?
ARRINGTON: In work, life and family - Ultimately, I want to hear God say, "Well done!' I want to serve God's purpose in my generation. That's what motivates me. I want to cultivate the seeds that have been sown into my life so that a bountiful harvest that can manifest and benefit those around me. This includes work, life, and family. If I'm living on purpose, fulfilling my purpose, I have the assurance that the Lord is pleased. Part of that purpose is planting the seeds of hope, life, and truth through my words and deeds. Frantz Fanon once said that every generation has a responsibility to discover its mission and then fulfill it's mission. If this is true, members of every generation have roles and assignments. I'm interested in doing my part.
FELLAS: Best describe your personality. Would you say it's a tiger, bear, or lamb? Explain.
ARRINGTON: I'm meek like a lamb but can display the ferocity and strength of a tiger. Also, tigers tend to lead fairly solitary lives. I enjoy independence and producing when I'm done.
FELLAS: If there was one thing you could change about the conditions we face here in Milwaukee, what would it be?
ARRINGTON: The poverty rate for children under 18 in Milwaukee is about 42%. Poverty contributes to numerous factors that negatively impact the success potential of children. Therefore, I would eliminate child poverty through job programs, empower parents and provide effective educational services.
FELLAS: Would you say your glass is half empty or half full? Explain.
ARRINGTON: I used to be a glass half empty person. I would focus on details often. Therefore, I'd have a tendency to see what's missing or what's wrong. But, as I've matured, I've shifted to a glass half-full viewpoint. I try to focus on the bright spots in situations. As a leader, I encourage collaborators to celebrate small victories. It's important to maintain a sense of balance in the midst of any endeavor or project. Certainly, completion is the goal, but I've learned that the journey is equally if not more enjoyable. That's where the glass half-full perspective becomes critical.
FELLAS: How does faith play a role in your life?
ARRINGTON: Faith is the central element of my core. I believe that I am who I am and that I can do what I do by God's design and grace. Faith purifies and deepens my aspirations and efforts. Faith helps me to pursue goals and dreams in the midst of trial and tribulation. When I can't find my way or see a way out of hardship, faith keeps me grounded and informs my moral vision and compass.
FELLAS: What was the last book you read?
ARRINGTON: The Black Presidency: Black Obama and the Politics of Race in America by Michael Eric Dyson
FELLAS: What's your favorite movie?
ARRINGTON: The Great Debaters
FELLAS: Who is your role model/mentor ? Why?
ARRINGTON: My role model/mentor is my father. His faith walk has inspired me. His reputation is good. He is thorough in his work and very wise. With respect to vocation, we have similarities. My father is also a results-based individual and he excels in what he does. As a leader, it's important to be thorough, to have wisdom, to focus on a achieve results, and to have a good reputation. Above all, his relationship with God is at the center of everything and that's most impressive to me.