Kareem Moore has always been passionate about helping others. In high school, while some of his peers were playing video games and hanging out at the basketball court, he was busy launching his nonprofit Achieve M.O.O.R.E, which now exposes students to college pathways that will lead them to a positive future.
And at Morehouse, the Queens, New York, native began his freshman year further committing to his calling to help others. He majored in biology and was planning a future as an anesthesiologist until he had a change of heart.
“I got to the end of first semester junior year, and then had a sit-down with my dad and mom,” he recalled. “I did a PowerPoint presentation on how I was not passionate about that (a career in medicine) anymore.”
“My passion was in business management and entrepreneurship,” he said.
On Dec. 13, Moore, who earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration, will graduate with the Class of 2020 in the online Morehouse College Commencement. For Moore, the celebration will be a testament to his focus on the future and to his amazing academic feat. He kept his promise to his parents, even after switching majors junior year.
Moore says his race to the finish line was worth it: “I feel like consulting is my calling,” he said.
Initially, Moore received some push-back from his parents when he decided to switch majors junior year. He’d promised to graduate in four years, and for one thing, they doubted that he could stay with that schedule after changing majors so late. “But in the PowerPoint, I mapped out how I was going to graduate and the job I would get,” he said.
Moore had some hurdles to clear, though. He’d never had an internship in business so he consulted with his adviser, Belinda Johnson White, Ph.D., to make plans. “First, she said it was impossible, and we just sat down till it was possible,” he explained. “I had to take six credits over the summer. Then, senior year I had to take 21 credits in the fall, and then 25 second semester.
“My mom and dad had both taken breaks from school and finished college later,” he said. “So, I (took 21 credits) to keep my promise—and I was the first in my family to graduate in four years.”
Because he was carrying such a heavy load as a new business major, Moore’s grade point average dropped at first; he even lost his scholarship. Determined, however, he persevered.
“I’m really-faith based, so I prayed,” he said, “and I knew that was what I was supposed to be doing. I got into senior year, brought my GPA up, and graduated with honors, a 3.27 GPA. It was pretty remarkable.”
Even more remarkable was the fact that Moore had also continued putting time into Achieve M.O.O.R.E, the community ascension organization he founded in high school. The nonprofit— designed to create additional pipelines to college for high-schoolers, and offer college students opportunities to indulge in philanthropy, comradery and altruism—became, at one time, one of the AUC’s largest community service organizations. (The acronym stands for: Modest, Open- Minded, Optimistic, Resilient, Exemplary.)
Achieve M.O.O.R.E. is now targeted to young Black men and women in both New York and Georgia. The group collects money for scholarship funds, maintains a board of trustees that meets four times of year, and boasts partnerships with organizations such as Cocoa-Cola and TikTok.
“We utilize students to effect change in the communities around the colleges,” he said. “The students gain experiences and build lifelong bonds… and we serve as many people as we can.”
Moore is continuing to help others outside of his nonprofit. He is now a business analyst.
By the end of his senior year, Moore had not only distinguished himself academically but also garnered two full-time job offers in business administration. He accepted a position at the Accenture consulting firm, in the Atlanta office. “Accenture means accent on the future,” Moore noted. “I was fortunate to get the offer because it was competitive and I had no prior experience.”
Today, Moore serves as a consulting development analyst, working with banks and other companies. “Now that the typical brick-and-mortar businesses have been destroyed, it’s about establishing a digital presence,” he said. “We help them develop different platforms and tell them how to grow their business from a digital standpoint. We also do strategy, and provide security, giving them different avenues to protect software.
“We find the problem, fix the problem, and help them solve that on a management level, too.”
He says his time at Morehouse College gave him a safe and supportive environment that allowed him to find his real calling. “I’m purposefully driven, and my purpose is to help people,” Moore said. “So this is like being a business doctor.”
First, (Dr. Belinda Johnson White) she said it was impossible, and we just sat down till it was possible. I had to take six credits over the summer. Then, senior year I had to take 21 credits in the fall, and then 25 second semester. My mom and dad had both taken breaks from school and finished college later. So, I (took 21 credits) to keep my promise—and I was the first in my family to graduate in four years.Kareem Moore, Class of 2020