J.Cole appeared on the Tavis Smiley show recently and the conscious rapper spoke about what makes him happy and exactly why the school system has failed him.
The Magna Cum Laude, St. John’s University graduate said that standardized testing is one of the main reasons that the educational system has failed him.

“To be a college graduate with the amazing grades, it wasn’t a typical story. But the thing with me is I was always a great student. If I could go back and do it again, I would’ve really learned the material. I knew how to pass test. Night before, study and cram, go in and knock the test out. I do my work and do my papers. But in terms of retaining the information, I don’t think I did a good job doing that. And I don’t think our school system is set up-if a guy like me can have straight A’s and graduate college Magna Cum Laude but still turn 30 and feel like ‘Man I didn’t really retain it,’ I feel like it says a lot about our education system-that you can squeeze by and know how to get by.”

The ‘Fire Squad” artist also told a cute story about how determined he was as a child.
“My mom tells a story of when I was in the first grade, during parent teacher conference, she came to my first grade teacher and the teacher says, ‘What are you doing at home?’ And my mom is like, ‘Whats going on?’ and my teacher is like, ‘Well he comes up to me everyday and ask me what his grade is,’ Everyday in first grade, I would go to the teacher and be like, ‘ Do you have my average?’ She’s like, it’s first grade! You don’t get grades. You get satisfactory.’ But I was already on it like, ‘whats my average?’ So I was always on a path for college. Before I was ever dreaming about being a rapper, I was dreaming about going to college.”
J.Cole also talked about happiness and finding his way to it.
“Love Yourz,” That sums up the entire album and just what I’ve learned in my career. That’s what the entire album is about, when I was young I thought that success was all I needed; that’s what gonna bring me happiness. Buying my mama a house, the fame, the accolades, having people say, “Oh you are the best in the game.” I thought those would be the things that would bring me happiness and then when those things came and the happiness wasn’t there. I realized why that was;there was such an attempt to achieve these things and to keep going that you lose site of the people and the blessings that you have around you. You’re so focused on the next success, the step in your career, the next jet or whatever it is and you forget the fact that you have these things that seem small if you’re looking that way but if you look this way you realize the only thing that matters…that’s your mother, your family, that’s love and that’s what the song is about.”

Gotta love him. Watch the full interview here. 

-Via S2S Magazine

About The Author

Bianca Alysse is a creatively driven Bronx-born writer and editor. Before becoming The Knockturnal‘s music editor she served as Latina‘s creative coordinator and was a contributor at Billboard. The Boricua scribe has a lengthy resume in the music industry and has penned for Universal Music Publishing Group, Epic Records, G.O.O.D. Music, Compound Entertainment, Artistry & Récords, and Arcade Creative Group. Her work has been seen on platforms like VIBE, mitú, TIDAL, Remezcla, and behind the scenes at New York Fashion Week. As an independent contractor, she has written for Sony Music Entertainment’s global business affairs department, Warner Music Group, and currently Roc Nation.

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