8th grader aims to change the world

Orlando eighth grader Marcus Williams partnered with a local park for a hands-on ecology program with his peers.
2:23 | 08/05/22

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Transcript for 8th grader aims to change the world
>>> AND WE'RE BACK NOW WITH THE EIGHTH-GRADER FROM FLORIDA DETERMINED TO CHANGE THE WORLD, HELPING TO LEAD FELLOW STUDENTS WHEN IT COMES TO ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION. LET'S MEET MARCUS WILLIAMS. >> I'VE ALWAYS HAD AN INTEREST IN ANIMALS, BUT I THOUGHT I COULD DO MORE. I WANTED TO GET TOGETHER WITH SOME OF OUR TEACHERS AND FIGURE OUT WAYS TO DO MORE. THE ECO CLUB IS DEDICATED TO HELPING ANIMALS AND DEDICATED TO SPREADING KNOWLEDGE. BASICALLY, WE GIVE A KID THE OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN HOW TO GROW AND COOK THEIR OWN FOOD, CARE FOR ANIMALS, HOW TO RECYCLE. WE HAVE ABOUT 120 KIDS BETWEEN THE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL AND MIDDLE SCHOOL. >> I'M THE VICE PRESIDENT OF THE ZOOLOGICAL OPERATIONS HERE AT SEAWORLD, FLORIDA, AND I OVERSEE OUR RISK OF OPERATIONS THAT OUR TEAMS RUN EVERY DAY. ABOUT SIX YEARS AGO WE GOT A PHONE CALL COMING HOME FROM A RESCUE ABOUT A SCHOOL GROUP THAT WANTED TO PRODUCE LETTUCE FOR OUR MANATEES AT SEAWORLD. THIS IS THE FIRST TIME I GOT TO MEET MARCUS. >> J.P. HAS DEFINITELY BEEN MY MENTOR. HE'S DONE SO MUCH FOR ME. >> WHEN WE STARTED OUR RELATIONSHIP AND OUR PARTNERSHIP WITH THE ECO CLUB, I GOT TO MEET MARCUS ON THE FIRST DAY, AND THIS YOUNG MAN WAS DOING THINGS -- HE HAD A DRIVE FOR ECOSYSTEM. HE HAD A DRIVE FOR HOW CAN WE HELP THE ENVIRONMENT. >> OUR INITIAL IDEA WAS A FULL HEAD OF LETTUCE. WE'VE ACTUALLY GROWN OVER 1,000 HEADS OF LETTUCE WE'VE DONATED TO THE MANATEE RECOVERY PROGRAM AT SEAWORLD. >> THAT'S WHAT THE ENVIRONMENT NEEDS, SOMEONE TO GO OUT THERE AND SAY HERE'S WHAT WE CAN DO AND HERE'S HOW WE GET THERE. THIS IS WHY WE HAVE A PARTNERSHIP WITH ECO CLUB AND WHY MARCUS SUCH A SPECIAL YOUNG MAN. OUR HOPE WITH ECO CLUB WITH THIS MISSION, OUR MISSION TIED TOGETHER IS TO CONTINUE TO GROW THE NEXT GENERATION. THE MARCUSES OF THE WORLD WHO ARE OUT THERE WHO WANT TO HELP ANIMALS IN THE WILD, WHO WANT TO FIGURE OUT THE NEXT WAY TO MAKE BETTER OYSTER BEDS OR PRODUCE BETTER ANTIBIOTICS FOR HONEY AND ANIMALS THAT ARE INJURED, IT'S AN HONOR TO WALK WITH SOMEONE LIKE MARCUS AND WATCH HIM GROW UP. >> ONE OF THE THINGS I LEARNED ACROSS THIS LONG JOURNEY, I FEEL, IS HOW IMPORTANT ONE PERSON CAN BE. I WANT TO CHANGE THE WORLD JUST BY ENLIGHTENING PEOPLE. THIS CLUB COULD EXPAND SO MUCH, MAYBE NATIONWIDE, IT COULD MAKE A DIFFERENCE. >> CONGRATS TO MARCUS AT A YOUNG AGE.

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