Counselor Marcell Brown has gone from pushing kids off the streets to pushing them in the classrooms

Former cop finds more satisfaction in his proactive role at Roosevelt


Photo by Erica Butler

Marcell Brown, a Roosevelt Counselor, tried a few different jobs before getting into counseling. “I feel like right now I’m living out my purpose. I feel like I’m living my dream,” he said in an interview.

Marcell Brown’s life has had many turns, but he has finally found what he is passionate about.
“When I wake up in the morning, I know I have a job to do, and I actually care about making a difference in not just some kids, in all kids,” he said.
Brown works as a counselor here at Roosevelt. Although he is deeply passionate about his job now, he was not always this clear about his career path. He began as a police officer but realized that he was not really helping the kids he would encounter.
“I noticed I was always arresting the same habitual juveniles,” he said, adding, “I wanted to start teaching kids on the front end of the law, as opposed to being that authoritative figure and reaching them on the back end of the law. Having to, in essence, ruin their lives.”
On his road from police officer to counselor, he met many students who changed his perspectives on life. He said specifically that before he was a counselor one kid heavily influenced his decision to change his career path. The child had been struggling a lot mentally and Brown worked persistently to show how much he cared, and showed love and empathy to help him. Brown didn’t realize how much he was helping him until the child’s father had a conversation with him.
“The student’s father told me he had been seeing a tremendous turnaround in his son’s life, and he wanted to thank me for being there to support him and his son, and he told me that I should consider becoming a school counselor because of the impact he saw I was making on his son,” he said.
This conversation led Brown to realize that he wanted to pursue counseling. Before this conversation he had not even thought about becoming a counselor. “I wish I would’ve found this job earlier but sometimes in life you have to get through certain experiences to get to what you want,” brown said. “In life all experiences are pretty much always your teachers, so, the experiences that I’ve gone through helped me prepare for this time period.”
He is constantly trying to motivate his students to be their best self and he says that one motivational quote he always lives by and encourages his students to live by is: “Shoot for the heavens: Even if you fall short, you’ll still be amongst the stars,” because he believes that in life you should always aim as high as possible.