The great-granddaughter of Booker T. Washington, Dr. Sarah Washington O’Neal Rush, to launch a character education and leadership workbook/curriculum this fall—16 Success Principles: Being, Growing, Leading, Soaring. Ever since she first stepped foot onto the campus of Tuskegee University in 1996, the school her great-grandfather founded for former slaves and their descendants in 1881, she has been on a mission to uplift those who strive to rise above their circumstances.
This was the inspiration behind 16 Success Principles (16SP).
Her dim outlook on life brightened dramatically when she visited Tuskegee University for the first time in her life as a young adult. “Discovering how my great-grandfather and other former slaves were able to rise above their circumstances to do so much more with so much less, changed my life.” After that visit, she was convinced that when we realize the strength of the blood that runs through our veins, it has power to change lives. She says, “I am the evidence.”16SP incorporates a strength-based approach, rooted in evidenced based, solution-focused concepts, along with cognitive behavioral exercises and activities. The principles are intended to develop or improve upon skills in character building and leadership.
These skills include critical thinking, organized debating, interpersonal relationships, effective writing and communication, social media etiquette, financial literacy, and social and emotional skills. In late fall 2023, 16SP will be available to community-based organizations, schools, and other institutions that work with teens and young adults.Dr. Rush holds a master’s degree in psychology and a doctorate in leadership. Her years of training and experience in the field of mental health, including, as a clinical counselor and an adjunct psychology professor, were instrumental in developing the material.
Two of her great-grandfather’s books provided additional inspiration—Character Building, and his bestselling autobiography, Up from Slavery. The latter has been so inspiring and impactful at provoking positive change internationally, that it has been translated into more than ten different languages and has never been out of print.Dr. Rush is also the author of Rising Up from the Blood: A Legacy Reclaimed, A Bridge Forward and the coauthor of Timeless Treasures: Reflections of God’s Word in the Wisdom of Booker T. Washington. Both are available on Amazon.com. Dr. Rush currently lives in North Carolina with her husband, Anthony Rush.