Burlington, N.C. -- They went from Williams High School in Burlington to being seniors in college, but not without the goal of giving back to their community.
Two of the three Prestige members, Dezian Lathan and Keegan Pace, joined WFMY News 2's Tracey McCain on the Good Morning Show to talk about the group they formed to help aspiring college students find the funds to get a higher education.
"We're about mentoring the youth and basically giving them an opportunity to brighten their horizons to different things they've never seen before, like colleges, job opportunities and internships," said Lathan.
In 2007, Lathan, who attends Chowan University, Pace, who attends UNC Chapel Hill, and Kendall McBroom, who attends Hampton University, formed Prestige with a vision to make a difference in Alamance County.
"We're hoping to equip these young men with life skills and resources to get to college and places they've never been before," said Pace.
The guys admit the mentoring group is a lot of work, but they say seeing their impact on the community is worth it.
"It's a struggle, it's a lot of phone tag, putting things together, running back and forth from Chapel Hill to Burlington but we make it work," said Pace.
"We think we're making a change," said Lathan. "A lot of kids have told us how we've inspired them and how they want to be like us. And to hear them say that at such a young age, it keeps us motivated to keep going and making a change in society," said Lathan.
"Our goal is to make kids want to be positive. There are a lot of negative influences out there right now, but we want kids to grow up and be someone like MLK or some of the other positive people who have made a difference," Pace added.
Prestige is planning a few events as fundraisers for their mentoring programs. "On February 8, we're having a Prestige Ball, where we teach guys to cater to the ladies, and we teach them different types of etiquette," said Lathan.
They're also working on a 5K planned for late April or early May. The third project is a trip to Nepal.
"We're looking to take a couple of kids with us from the Burlington area who are graduating seniors to Nepal to volunteer in an orphanage with us. We want to teach them how to serve, and we also want to give them a passion for service that they can bring back to the community," said Pace.
The group has a $15,000 goal with all funds going to the trip to Nepal. You can keep up with the group and also make a donation through their website. Click here to be directed to it.
You can also mail donations to the following address:
Prestige for Nepal, P.O. Box 191, Carrboro, NC 27510
WFMY News 2