The Right Attitude Goes a Long Way

Cody Crothers dances on the Ohio State Oval.

Cody Crothers dances his way to Ohio State.

In the summer of 2013, Cody Crothers, a first-generation student from Hillsboro, Ohio, found out he was accepted to Ohio State. There was just one little hitch—he didn’t know how he was going to pay tuition.

“I decided to take a job as a sign artist for Mattress Solutions in Cincinnati to save money for tuition and found myself dancing on a street corner five days a week through rain, snow, sleet and heat,” said Crothers. “I’m really shy, so I was nervous to say the least, but I decided that I could either do a lousy job or dance like a complete fool and have a blast.”

Apparently, that’s what he did, and people started to notice.

When several of Crothers’ fans expressed support for his work ethic and positive attitude to mattress company management, they learned about Crothers’ dream of earning enough money to get to Ohio State.

Unbeknownst to him, fans set up a Facebook page, “Beechmont Dancing Guy,” to celebrate Crothers’ energy and optimism and to solicit donations for his college tuition.

“One day in late December, more than 100 people showed up on my corner dancing and waving signs and handed me two paint buckets filled with money they had raised for my tuition,” Crothers said. “My family and my friends were there too—they have been such an inspiration to me. I was overwhelmed.”

People started delivering checks for Crothers at the mattress store. One in particular read, in part, “Cody, you are a great example that you can have a great attitude about any job. Thank you for bringing so much joy to Beechmont.” He received messages from as far away as The Netherlands.

Crothers enrolled at Ohio State spring semester and is majoring in English.

“I’m a writer by nature,” said Crothers. “My high school English teacher, Mary Lou McCormick, really inspired me to pursue creative writing.”

Crothers is working on his poetry and hopes to continue work on a novel he started in high school.

Does he plan to dance for the mattress store this summer?

“Oh yeah,” says Crothers. “I don’t want to take any of this for granted. I’ll continue to work as hard as I can.”