Today, he encouraged students at West Philadelphia high school to do the same.
Wyclef Jean spent the afternoon with students pushing the power of their possibilities.
"You got two ways to do it, the fast way which will leave you to the grave or the cemetery or you can do it the right way," Wyclef said.
Wyclef's visit was part of a community service effort by by more than 150 volunteers from Timberland which sells his yele-haiti boots, Villa Fashions and City Year to renovate some areas of the school.
When the Haitian born architect of the Grammy award winning Fugees held a master class on the history of hip hop, the lessons were about more than music.
"The kids feel their forgotten. Our role is to come back and let them know how important they are," Wyclef said.
At one point, he gave the mic to a young mc in the class.
Wyclef answered students' questions about his life, music, and his humanitarian work to help them see the potential in their own lives to make a difference in the world.
Ultimately Wyclef hopes the students take what he shared with them and turns it into a passion and a mission for a brighter future.