Olympic athletes talk with Central Academy students about social consciousness

Posted at 5:14 PM, Oct 13, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-13 18:14:29-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- “Four time, all state,” DreShaun Sanders said.

That’s what you’ll hear when you talk with him about his track record.

“Those are three of my medals…100, 200, and 400 in state last year,” Sanders said.

On Friday, Sanders caught up with three track legends: KCK native Maurice Greene, Central graduate Muna Lee and Olympics Bronze Medalist Dr. John Carlos.

“Coach Jefferson, he always talked about Muna, and we always watched track videos of Muna and Maurice so finally being in the same room and talking with them felt good,” Sanders said.

The three Olympians talked with Central students more than just sports. They touched on social consciousness as well.

“All of it came to mind and we did the pledge of allegiance one day and one of my students sat down in front of me,” Principal Anthony Madry said. “And it wasn't until I asked him why that I knew I had to make some kind of effort to expose them to what the real truths and realities are in our society today.”

For Dr. Carlos, he said it’s about building a bridge between youth and history.

“You have self-worth and you can't take it for granted. Understand? You have to load your weapon, and your weapon is your mind,” Dr. Carlos said. “Use your mind as a sponge to absorb as much history as you can... So when you have the opportunity to raise your voice and speak on issues, you can speak on what you know, not oppose to what you think you know.”

Sanders said making it to the finish line is more than winning a medal, but paving the way for those after him.

‘I work with a lot of people that are younger than me -- that look up to me -- to help them get better, on the track and the books,” Sanders said.

“Just bring love back into the world,” Dr. Carlos said. “That's the biggest thing I can give.”