Josiah Yoba, a 15-year-old sophomore at the Eagle Academy for Young Men of Harlem, lives with his mom and two older sisters in the Bronx. He recently fielded some questions from Charlie Hanger, the digital content manager for our Foundation and Learning Center.
CH: Tell us about what you want to do when you get older.
JY: I don’t really have one thing that I want to do yet. I’m interested in a lot of things, but right now they’re just like hobbies. I like to draw and play guitar. I’m into doing realistic art, eyes and faces. We just started a music program at school this year, and some of us from The Bridge are in it.
I played guitar before the class, and I bought a new one this summer with some of the money I made in the Youth Works program. It’s an electric with an amp and some pedals. I’ve been playing every day for 30 minutes or an hour. Our class is like a little band with piano and drums, and we’re working on “Beat It,” “Low Rider” and the theme song from “Kill Bill.” I started with acoustic lessons when I was about 10 because my dad also plays.
CH: It sounds like you’re putting a lot of time into music. Could you see that being a career some day?
JY: I could see it happening if I was consistent at it and put more time into it.
CH: What’s your favorite part of the after school program at The Bridge?
JY: Probably golf. It’s a lot like music. You have to suck at it at first, but you know what you need to work on, and you get better if you keep practicing. I was on our high school team last season, and that was our first experience playing against other people. I’m excited to play more matches this spring.
CH: What’s the best part of your game?
JY: Probably putting. The worst is the driver. I struggle with consistency. I’ll hit it far but not straight, and then straight but not far.
CH: What are some of your other interests outside of school and The Bridge?
JY: I’ve been exercising and working out. I mostly do body-weight exercises — push-ups and pull-ups and dips.
CH: What’s your favorite experience since joining the program?
JY: Going out to The Bridge. It’s fun to play the courses and cool to see just how nice it is and what it’s like out there. Playing the par-3 course was fun, but playing the full 18 with a group of adults in September was really cool.
You can hear Josiah describe his Water Fair project in the video below. He starts talking at the 2:00 mark.