Chance the Rapper paid a visit to the 5th graders at Adam Clayton Powell Paideia Academy and was met with resounding screams and tears upon seeing the Chicago’s favorite.
According to abc, 24-year-old Chance is best known for being the first streaming-only musician to win a Grammy, went to the academy to teach kids about a skill he believes is priceless – coding.
“For me coding is one of the main kind of cheat codes or finesses to get further in the industry or further to what you want to do,” Chance told the kids, according to abc.
Sheila Barlow, principal of Adam Clayton said that Chance the Rapper “means opportunity” to her students, the news outlet reported.
“They see someone that looks like them that’s not flashy, he just seems like a really down-to-earth guy who came up the same way that they did,” she said to abc. “So it just shows them the end or what the possibility would be for someone who’s coming through with Chicago public schools.”
Without a record label, Chance said his use of technology has been an integral part of his success on a road less taken, according to abc. This past December during his visit to the academy, Google announced a $1.5 million donation to Chicago Public Schools and SocialWorks to be used for computer science education across Chicago Public Schools.
“Google has a very specific, streamlined way of making sure this money is seen by people that need to see it,” Chance said to abc.
A principal at Google.org, Justin Steele, helped spearhead the effort – and informed another ecstatic fifth-grade student Sy’mone Chappelle that “anywhere you have a computer you can do coding.” Steele said to the news outlet he loves the excitement around coding and that Chance’s influence could make an impact on creativity for kids on a deeper level.
“By teaching them coding skills, they can be not just creators of the content, but they can be creators of the platforms and the technology underneath it and that’s really powerful,” he explained to abc.
Chance told the news outlet he hopes his visit will not only leave a mark on the particular fifth-grade class but also future generations.