Stacey Young, Kogod/BSBA ’93, is a businessman, professor, inspirational speaker, author, and most recently, founder of an educational non-profit. He has made it his life’s mission to give empowerment where there might otherwise be none. From community college to jail classrooms, Stacey is paying it forward by teaching business and entrepreneurship sprinkled with inspirational life lessons, opening doors to bigger and better things for his students.
Stacey knows first-hand that one person who believes in your potential can change your life. In high school, he failed many of his classes and was told by his principal to drop out. His mother responded simply by telling him, “It’s your life, it’s your choice,” letting him know despite what his principal said, his success was in his own hands. “There are a lot of folks who aren’t given the option,” says Stacey. “Imagine how many are being told the same thing, that they’re not worthy.”
Stacey graduated from high school in the bottom 10 percent of his class, and continued to struggle academically in college. But because of the support he felt from his mother and others along the way, he found his groove and came to AU. After enjoying a successful business career, Stacey was inspired to share his experience with others. Today he is an adjunct professor at Northern Virginia Community College and a teacher in a local jail.
Stacey’s goal is for all of his students to experience the same support and sense of empowerment that he did. He knows his students by name, and gives one-on-one attention to each student in dynamic, Socratic style classes. “I will try to bend over backwards for each student. I can’t do the work for them, but I can open the door,” says Stacey. “If I can help one individual move forward in a positive way, there’s no greater feeling in the world.”
Stacey has written several books in the past year and will be releasing a book on business ethics this spring. His educational non-profit, Saving Our Communities at Risk Through Educational Services (SOCARTES) , serves at-risk communities and local inmates by teaching business concepts as well as critical thinking and interpersonal, organizational, and time management skills.