"My first two years at North Augusta, I had all boys. They had behavioral issues," said Mr. Lewis, who teaches seventh-grade English at North Augusta Middle School and sponsors the See It to Achieve It Club.
"They had dreams but no vision of how to get to them," he said.
Each Tuesday, the club's usual meeting day, his pupils know they need to look their best.
"We have to look like we would to do a job," said Kiersten Lee, a seventh-grader who has been part of the club since last year.
Lessons in job etiquette and interviewing skills, college campus visits and community service are among the club's activities.
On Nov. 15 club members volunteered at the Salvation Army Thrift Shop on Knox Avenue.
"We're here to help people out," said Kiersten, who, along with Haley Dunbar and Nastassjia Dicks, worked to put price tags on items. "The best thing you can give is your time."
Mr. Lewis started the club about three years ago. It has eight members this year, but membership fluctuates because of other school activities, he said.
"A lot of them are in GT (gifted and talented), on the newspaper staff or step team," he said.
Though it's too early to tell how the club will affect his pupils' futures, Mr. Lewis said he has already heard from a few who are in high school.
They've told him that what he taught them has already helped them.
Reach Charmain Brackett at firstname.lastname@example.org.