MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – From the classroom to communities, Patrick Henry High School is working to inspire and motivate its black male students.

The school’s program, known as “100 Black Men Strong,” partners students with mentors to help encourage and empower them.

Two years ago, Patrick Henry High School held its first “100 Black Men Strong” program.

The current principal Yusuf Abdullah said the principal at the time wanted to turn things around for her black male students after witnessing discipline issues and low graduation rates.

Today, Abdullah continues the push for change and excellence.

More than 100 students met in the school’s gymnasium with entrepreneurs and business leaders Friday. Organizers said it helps students create a vision for their lives and gives them the resources they need to thrive.

This is only the second time the school has held the program, but leaders and volunteers said they see an instant impact.

According to Abdullah, 285 black male students attend Patrick Henry High School. The principal said he plans to continue and expand the program to ensure it makes a difference.

His goal is for mentors to visit the school and meet with students daily or monthly, depending on their schedules.