‘If I can do it, they can do it, too.’
The trajectory of Perrian Glasby’s life took a radical turn in the wrong direction when he was a freshman in college. “I did a knuckleheaded thing. I was hanging with the wrong crowd, feeling peer pressure, trying to find my way.” That “knuckleheaded thing” led to an arrest, being convicted of a felony, and incarceration.
As part of his probation, Perrian was assigned to CV’s Harlem Justice Community Program, which helps kids avoid getting in trouble again. The program focuses on school, work, and connecting with family and community supports—all designed to give young people a plan and a focus.
“The program reminded me that, with an education, I should be able to make a living and have a comfortable life,” said Perrian. “That I could still succeed regardless of what happened when I was 17.”
As part of the program, Perrian – like all participants – was matched with a mentor. “My mentor was a successful African-American man that I could look up to and try to be like. He was successful even though he’d been incarcerated, too.”
Perrian came full circle and is now a CV staff member, mentoring other kids coming into the program. “I really like being a mentor. CV gave me a blueprint on how to do things, and now I’m sharing that with others. Because of my age, the youth relate to me. I help them see that if I can do it, they can do it, too.”
Perrian is set to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice in May. He plans to pursue a master’s degree in social work in the fall.