Magic Johnson, Debra Lee and Common Promote Youth Apprenticeship Program

The three will mentor youth during the summer through the Coca-Cola Pay It Forward campaign.

Posted: 02/06/2013 02:38 PM EST

Magic Johnson has teamed up with BET CEO Debra Lee, rapper Common and Coca Cola to mentor youth in the second annual Coca-Cola Pay It Forward campaign. Young adults between the ages of 16 and 21 will get to follow any of the three celebrities around for a week this summer.

"It's a chance for young people to be with us, pick our brains and learn the craft," Johnson told TheGrio. "I want them to understand the professionalism, versatility and hard work."

"Young people forget we were once their age. We're still connected to the streets, neighborhoods and communities through the work that we do."

The basketball legend credits having mentors, role models and involved parents for showing him the path to success and wants to show kids the skills necessary to pursue their dreams.

"I will personally be involved in overseeing the work they do," Common said. "Beyond music, it's important for me to reach back and create a legacy bigger than my career."

The Coca-Cola Pay It Forward campaign will award four apprenticeships in various fields. Johnson will handle business, Common will oversee music and community outreach and Lee will run media and entertainment.

To nominate a youth, visit the My Coke Rewards site through March 2. Coca-Cola has also teamed up with the United Negro College Fund to accept donations via text.

BET National News - Keep up to date with breaking news stories from around the nation, including headlines from the hip hop and entertainment world. Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.

(Photo: Dave Pence, courtesy of Coca-Cola North America)

Videos You May Like

From Our Partners