As he packed his younger son Andrew off to his first semester at college, Bill Middleton felt the anxiety and apprehension that many parents do. His solution was two index cards printed with Middleton’s 12 pieces of advice for his son — one framed and ready to display, and another laminated so that Andrew could tuck it away in his wallet.
Middleton’s advice is now part of a book of inspiring stories from black fathers — including boldface names like Russell Simmons and Allan Houston — that he co-authored with Leslie Gordon. Middleton hopes that the book, “Dare to be Extraordinary: A Collection of Positive Life Lessons from African American Fathers” will help parents of all communities (and genders).
Middleton is happy to report that Andrew heeded his advice, and has graduated from Western Michigan University with a degree in American Public Policy. Here are some of the tips Middleton gave for Andrew's first semester: