Venturing out, finding myself

Tavarius Felton was 6 years old when he started attending The Salvation Army Marsh Road Boys & Girls Club. Now majoring in Mass Communications Broadcast at North Carolina Central University in Durham, North Carolina, Tavarius said he is following in his father’s footsteps.

“My father was in communications, and I want to go into public relations and work for the federal government,” he said. But first, he has his sights set on becoming a Peace Corps volunteer—possibly in the Dominican Republic because he is bilingual—after graduation.

“The Boys & Girls Club staff played a big role in my life by giving me extra activities to do and showing me leadership qualities that I could follow when I got older.” Tavarius continued attending the Club through his years at South Mecklenburg High School, then worked at The Salvation Army Camp Walter Johnson for a summer. He described those years as “venturing out, finding myself.”

What he discovered is a trait for work hard, evidenced by his two internships—one with Duke University School of Public Policy, and the most recent with AT&T. With his parents and younger brother (also a Club member) still in Charlotte, Tavarius returns home whenever his schedule allows.

“Whenever I’m home, I let her know where I’m at,” he said of Diane Minsker, his mentor and a member of The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary. “We usually go to Panera Bread and sit down and eat and talk about my semester. She helps me with whatever I’m experiencing. She passes on her knowledge. It’s wonderful to be able to talk about things I need help with. It’s not just the scholarship funds from the Women’s Auxiliary that help you, it’s being in the Club from a little kid and growing up with these mentors. Everything goes into the scholarship. It’s a great opportunity.”

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