Brandon Hamilton started his New Look journey in 2005. On December 17, 2014, he graduated from college at Georgia State University. Check out his blog below on his experience in our programs:
What is your first New Look memory?
My first time being a part of Usher’s New Look was participating in New Look back when it was just a 2-week camp. My dad presented it to me as a 2-week basketball camp put on by Usher. I didn’t understand how Usher was hosting a basketball camp, but I was eager to do something different and make the most out of my summer. My first new look memory is the huge water balloon fight we had during camp that year. Usher, Shawn, Gavin and everyone was there and it took everyone by surprise. This was one of my all time favorite UNL moments.
Did New Look Help you discover your spark? What is it?
New Look definitely helped me discover my spark. In fact, it helped me find several. Since I was young, I’ve always been a compassionate person with a deep love for music. My father has collected and created music since he was young, and being influenced by that since my birth helped me develop a strong appreciation for it. Being in New Look gave me the opportunity to come out of my shell and showcase songs I had written, produced, and recorded by myself in my room. I was always shy growing up, and when I performed one of my songs for the first time I was shocked how much love and support I got back. New Look also allowed me to build on my passion for helping people. I was fortunate to be chosen to travel and conduct leadership trainings for youth on a global scale. I got to teach Powered by Service to youth in Kenya in 2011. To this day, I enjoy working with youth and serving in communities much like the one I spent a majority of my childhood in.
Describe your life, or outlook on life, before getting involved in New Look:
Before New Look, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. I knew I loved music and sports, but there was no direction. Growing up in a single parent home, my father worked a lot of hours to support the both of us and didn’t have a lot of time to spend with me. The extra direction I received was from New Look. They truly gave me the tools I needed to apply the skills and passions that I knew I possessed.
What were your dreams before joining New Look?
I had a lot of dreams. I wanted to be an NFL player, NBA player, musician, and video game developer. The list goes on, but luckily, through New Look I discovered what I truly was good at and that helped show me which direction was best for me.
How has New Look impacted your life so far? What’s your “New Look?”
New Look has impacted my life on many different levels. Through this organization, I’ve been able to intern at General Electric headquarters, get personal mentorship from CEOs like John Rice (GE) and John Brock (Coca-Cola). I’ve not only discovered myself, but also others like myself who have become life-long friends. So much has been given to me, that I am forever grateful for the things that I’ve gained through the organization. My “New Look” is the spirit, wisdom, and energy that I’ve gained from taking part in this organization, and take with me everywhere I go to share with others.
What are your future goals and career plans today? Have they changed since joining New Look?
I have many plans. Some that are in progress, and some that have yet to be discovered. Now that I have finished school and received my bachelor’s degree in Computer Information Systems from Georgia State, I hope to pursue a career in IT and project management. As far as music is concerned, I’ve always made music no matter the season. I enjoy letting people hear my music and I have become more open about sharing it over the years. One future goal is to be able to touch someone with my passion for music, and make a change in communities by utilizing my talents as a leader.
I want to thank New Look for…providing youth with a platform to explore their dreams and passions, as well as supplying the tools to put us on the right track. Many people aren’t able to discuss their dreams with others and talk about the steps that need to be taken in order to reach those goals. Planning is very important, and New Look teaches you how to creatively plan for your aspirations.
How do you plan to give back once you are a New Look alumni? I definitely want to always remain a part of the New Look family and give back to new youth entering the program by supplying the very things I learned from it. One of the most important things I’ve learned from the New Look foundation is that giving back is not just something important to do, it’s the humane thing to do.
Don’t chase money, chase opportunities.