Jan 31, 2012 • By

Principal Steve Harvey

Steve Harvey may soon add the title of “principal” to his long list of accomplishments – comedian, author, syndicated radio personality and film producer.

As an effort led by the Multicultural Center of Excellence at General Mills, I joined Harvey last week onsite at Phillips Academy in Birmingham, Alabama to reward the winning school of the nationwide “Principal-for-a-Day” essay contest with 100,000 Box Tops and a visit from Harvey, acting as principal.

(Steve Harvey; Box Tops for Education Brand Manager, Kim Bow Sundy; Box Tops Coordinator Susan Wormsby; winning Phillips Academy parent Angela Strozier; and Principal Mark Sullivan.)

We selected the best school out of close to 5,000 entrants based on Angela Strozier’s essay which detailed the additional support needed from Box Tops for Education to assist her daughter’s school after devastating tornadoes hit the Birmingham area last April.

The day was filled with excitement bubbling over that started with Harvey humorously giving the students a firm warning over the P.A. system to be on best behavior as there is new man in charge.

He walked the hallways connecting with the teachers on the day’s lesson plan and surprised a class with Strozier’s eighth grade daughter, and imparted the importance of continuing their education with determined focus.

The celebration grew in full force with a pep rally – complete with cheerleaders backed by a band that could rival many colleges – in honor of Box Tops and Principal Harvey.

He delivered a strong motivational message encouraging students to dream out the box – explaining that their dreams should be powerful.

Harvey also conveyed to the K-8 students at Phillips Academy the importance of developing a love for learning fostered by reading.

Editor’s note: You can watch video of Harvey at Phillips Academy in this footage from CBS42.com and read more about his visit on AL.com.