A Rock Island school beats out more than 100 others to win a Characters Unite Award. Thurgood Marshall Learning Center was one out of ten that was chosen. An award ceremony was held to honor their principal.
Thurgood Marshall’s principal, Phillip Ambrose is humble about his award; in fact he’ll never say he earned it, but that his school did.
"Tremendous honor you know for me obviously but even more important, it's a tremendous honor for our students and our faculty,” says Ambose.
"He's a very good leader, open minded guy, very fair.” says Michael Cole, a teacher’s aide.
Friday the USA network and Mediacom honored Ambrose with the award, for his efforts to increase awareness for diversity, tolerance and respect.
"What we wanted was a diversity project that went beyond black history month,” says Ambrose.
"When he has a passion about something, it's going to happen,” says Cole.
Ambrose created the Tuskegee Airmen project, which was incorporated in their curricular activities.
“They were an African American squadron during World War II that dealt with prejudice,” says cole.
He says their story relates to their students, "You have some adversity, some hurdles to jump over, our students are example of that."
Ambrose say’s their message of respect and never giving up is something that’s carried out daily, “What we do here, it's very unique, we're about much more than a single project. We’re really a school about achievement and measurable outcomes."
And while he won’t take credit for their success, others will argue.
"The measure of all this is leadership and you know like I said earlier, no more fitting than Mr. Ambrose getting this award,” says Cole.
Principal Ambrose was presented a $5,000 dollar grant that he plans to use towards their curriculum to help students prepare for life after high school.