A Fork in the Road tells the stories of Andre, an Isles employee, and Lamar, a former IYI student, two Trenton residents who “got into some trouble” as young men. Having dealt with some of the same challenges growing up, Andre became a mentor for Lamar, and helped motivate him to make serious changes in his life.
This short documentary was directed by Ava Rose Hoffman for The Trenton Project.The Trenton Project is a collaborative project produced by the students of Princeton University’s “Documentary Film and the City.” It is part of the Program in Urban Studies and supported by the Community-Based Learning Initiative, a university program which connects Princeton classes with partners in the community.
A Fork in the Road tells the stories of Lamar and Andre, Trenton residents who “got into some trouble” as young men. Having dealt with some of the same challenges growing up, Andre becomes a mentor for Lamar and recruits him to join YouthBuild, a vocational training program for youth aged 16-24 coordinated by Trenton nonprofit, Isles.
Today’s Trenton is not the same city that Andre experienced as a young man, for better and for worse. As Andre puts it, “the neighborhood has changed…” yet “the stakes are much higher now” for young people who are making choices at a critical time in their lives. This film explores some of these choices and challenges facing young people in Trenton today.
Under the positive influence of role models, Lamar and Andre cultivated the motivation to make serious changes in their lives and distinguish themselves from some of their peers, turning away from the streets and embarking on the road to self-development.
Calvin Thomas (Andre’s father) is a member of Isles’ Board of Trustees. This fall, he was interviewed by the students involved in The Trenton project about his memories and experiences growing up in Trenton