It is not WHAT you GET from It...It is WHO you BECOME through It.

When someone finds out that I practice the martial arts. The first question I am asked is "Are you a Black Belt?"

My response is ... "I have earned a Black Belt Rank."

"My name is Jerome Nojima.  It is so nice to meet you."

It is my hope for those students whom I have the pleasure of working with... realize the rank level earned through out program are grade levels signifying their continued progress of learning the martial arts.

They are NOT meant as labels... like "I am a Yellow Belt... or I am a Blue Belt."

Student's EARNED those levels just like advancing from 1st grade to 2nd grade in elementary school or 9th grade to 10th grade in high school... however, they are WHO they ARE with increased "Strength" in Confidence, in Courage, and in Character as they progress.

It is important to be PROUD of your achievements.  Let those awards you receive be a symbol of the challenges you overcame to earn them.  Be Thankful of the Journey and the Process for through it has made you a "Stronger" person. 

Just the other day we had the honor of awarding one of students their 1st degree Black Belt.

This young man, who's name is Justin, started over 6 or 7 years ago, he was so shy, and quiet.  He was a very timid person.

Through his study of the martial arts, he has raised the belief in himself dramatically.  He shares what he has learned with the the younger students willingly setting an "Excellent" example for the other students.

His performance at his Black Belt Test was just "Exceptional!"  He executed his forms with precision, and he demonstrated his knowledge of the art with deep understanding.  His test not only challenged his knowledge, however, his heart and character as well.  He showed extreme fortitude during the physical fitness phase of the test.  Never once did he want to quit!

Justin is still a quiet individual, who walks with a lot more Confidence... I believe his progress has inspired the other students to continue their journey in the martial arts.  He really let them know that if he could achieve his Black Belt that they CAN too.

I am so proud to have awarded Justin his Black Belt.  It is a symbol of OVERCOMING his challenges to BECOME who he is today.

I can truly say Justin is Radiating Confidence, Exhibiting Courage, and Exemplifying Character!

Live Fearless!... Justin!   Congratulations!

Mr. Jerome Nojima

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