“I’ve got my lunch packed up, my boots tied tight; I hope I don’t get in a fight. Ohhh, back to school…” Mark Wahlberg just aced the Billy Madison challenge: graduating high school as an adult. Congrats, Marky-Mark on earning your diploma via an online program, yesterday, Tuesday, September 17.
We guess Mark boogied one too many nights; It’s been 25 years since Mark Wahlberg has graced the halls of a school since departing from the 9th grade and ending his commitment to education (or so we thought).
“The greatest regret in my life is quitting school. I was lucky, but a lot of my friends who did the same ended up incarcerated or dead,” said Wahlberg. “Now I have a different perspective: that what’s cool in life is being a good person, and doing the right thing. I take any opportunity I can to speak to teens and encourage them, first and foremost, to graduate high school. And today, I’m proud to say I’m leading by example by joining the Class of 2013.”
And it’s true; Mark is celebrating his accomplishment with the Taco Bell Foundation for Teens. The party with Rolex filled piñatas is next week, everyone. Mark didn’t just focus on his Entourage these past few years; no, in fact the actor is also a philanthropist and Taco Bell Foundation for Teens ambassador.
With a customer base largely dominated by high-school aged persons, and often employed by the same demographic, it makes sense that Taco Bell would want to support these kids through their schooling. In order to do so, the Taco Bell Foundation for Teens partnered with Cengage Learning’s ed2go and Smart Horizons to create a scholarship program for Taco Bell employees.
Taco Bell hopes to encourage high school completion by providing the Taco Bell Team Members with free school materials, career certificates, and other resources helpful in supporting educational and professional development.
“Mark Wahlberg reminds us all that it is never too late to go back to school and earn your diploma,” said Taco Bell President Brian Niccol. “He is an inspiration to the Taco Bell leadership team to commit ourselves to doing everything we can to empower youth to do the same—starting with our own Team Members. We look forward to a successful pilot and hope that, in the future, we can further expand this program so that even more Team Members can use these educational and life skills not only at Taco Bell, but also wherever they choose to work.”
Kudos, Mark! You truly are The Fighter.