Growing up in segregated South Africa, music teacher Mario Pearson relied on education, determination and a passion for music to help him rise above apartheid. When he later became an elementary school music teacher, Mr. Pearson developed a theatre arts program using full-scale Broadway musical productions to inspire academically underperforming students to work harder and improve their self-esteem. The success of the program led to increased enrollment in the school and encouraged the accreditation committee to explore the concept of a magnet school for the creative arts. Now, as music teacher at Mainland High School in Daytona Beach, Mr. Pearson continues to inspire students to improve themselves and the world around them through music and the arts.
1988 Fairmont State College, B.A.