Max Milton, 13, is a future chemist with questions on Thursday.
"You went to two colleges," he said. "What kind of degrees did you get?"
The eighth grader from Williams Intermediate School is finding a formula for success.
That's why he's participating in Martin Luther King Mentor Day.
"I love it," he said. "I'm just learning a lot about dedication and how to build my own life skills and character."
Hosted by St. Ambrose University and Davenport Community Schools, some 200 male African-American students like Max discover that they're not alone.
Youngsters examined six core principles from the great boxer Muhammad Ali.
"We also want them to be aware of their culture and know they have vital roles and are important people to their family and community," said Dr. Kendahl Owoh, Davenport Community Schools.
"You can turn that into things that build you up, or things that tear you down," said volunteer mentor Mike Bailey.
Bailey, an executive with Deere & Company, guided one group of youngsters through several sessions.
It's all about building confidence and conviction.
"Really help them develop into stronger men today," he said. "Make some better decisions tomorrow."
This partnership is a way to connect students with the community. Mentorships to spark the future.
Max Milton is discovering a world of opportunity.
"So now you're basically everybody's supervisor?" he asked.
These are winning concepts for this future chemist to consider.
"I think it helps to build our community," he concluded. "Keep us on the right path, so we don't go out on the streets and do bad things."
It's something important to share with mentors in Davenport.