Leaders of Tomorrow: The SUCCESS Foundation Launches an Ambitious Program to Invest in Youth

Article excerpt

The SUCCESS Foundation officially kicked off its program to provide personal-development material to teens across the country with a celebration in March in conjunction with the SUCCESS Symposium. Guests at the Dallas event included about 350 educators, business leaders and leaders of organizations working with young people.

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Created by SUCCESS magazine's owner Stuart Johnson, the foundation's aim is to provide personal-development material to teens as a means of teaching life lessons on discipline, decision-making and accepting responsibility. The foundation's primary objective has been distributing its SUCCESS for Teens[TM] book, as well as an abridged audio version in CD and MP3 formats, to help inform young people about the importance| of principles such as goal-setting and maintaining a positive attitude and high self-esteem.

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Several teens spoke about how the book has affected them, "I have learned the negative and positive effects of forming good or bad habits," said Comma Solis, 17, of Dallas, who aspires to be a pediatric nurse. Before reading the book, she had a bad habit of not studying. "But I made the decision to study, and 1 took a test and did well. My friends were surprised because they knew 1 never used to study," Solis told the audience at the SUCCESS Foundation launch.

SUCCESS for Teens shows it's just these types of small daily actions--like studying for a test and doing well--that can make a difference over time, creating positive habits that contribute to a successful life.

The SUCCESS Foundation plans to distribute 10 million copies of SUCCESS for Teens free of charge to nonprofit youth-development organizations, schools and church groups. In about five months prior to the official foundation launch, more than 750,000 copies of SUCCESS for Teem had been distributed in print and audio.

"SUCCESS for Teens focuses on the principles that are fundamental to success," says John Fleming, executive director of the nonprofit. "Through this foundation, we hope to inspire kids to treat education seriously, to treat their futures seriously and to realize that their day-to-day decisions have an impact on what they do in life."

These resources are based on author Jeff Olson's book The Slight Edge[R], which demonstrates how small daily positive choices add up to create a significant difference over time. A SUCCESS for Teens Facilitator's Guide is also available.

The SUCCESS Foundation has enlisted support and assistance from a broad cross-section of very successful people, including Donald J. Trump and best-selling author and speaker Stedman Graham, who also serve on the foundation's advisory board.

"Personal development was a very influential factor in my growth at a young age," Trump tells SUCCESS, "so 1 understand the impact that positive reinforcement has on the young mind. I'm happy to lend my support to charitable organizations like the SUCCESS Foundation that make a difference on the next generation of leaders."

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Graham, who spoke at the foundation's celebration, says his interest in helping young people stems from the many mentors he had as he was growing up, participating in Boy Scouts, church, school band and sports. "When 1 was growing up, there were older people in the community who took their time to spend time with us young people. …