22 year old Kondwani Fidel is a recent graduate (with a Bachelor’s degree in English) from Virginia State University and currently works as a substitute teacher in his hometown of Baltimore, Maryland at Baltimore City College.
Yet Kondwani is anything but your average substitute teacher. Kondwani is an aspiring poet, that if not before, is now ABSOLUTELY well on his way to a successful career following his passion for words.
On Oct. 5, Kondwani greeted his class of students like any other day and like most other subs, was met by students that were borderline ignoring him, talking over him and anything but excited to get the lesson started. He mentioned to them that he was a poet, to which the students responded with disbelief, challenging him to recite one of his works for them.
What happened next was unbelievable (I got goosebumps), as Kondwani recited one of his original autobiographical pieces, speaking on his extremely troubled childhood, rough upbringing, suicidal thoughts and how he rose above it all to be the man he is today (which is an AMAZING one). This resonated with many of his students, who also had similar pasts and struggle to stay afloat in their difficult situations. This is evidenced by how they erupt in applause when he’s done.
His students recorded his performance and posted it online and the video has now gone viral. Check it out below and prepare to be WOWed.
Kondwani is now shopping around his memoir to publishers, has released a collection of his poems and is now receiving invitations to speak across the country.