After George Floyd’s murder in 2020, Franco Obour had a lot to get off his chest. Then a first-year student at the Rutgers School of Dental Medicine, Obour turned to his love of hip-hop to express himself.

He kept his focus on his studies as his “tiger parents” had taught him without sacrificing his voice. He drew attention for “What Do You See?” a musical collaboration with friend Dayne Carter written in the wake of protests that swept the nation three years ago.

“Making music is something I love to do, and it was something I didn’t want to give up. So I found a way to incorporate it into my every day and still be able to succeed in the classroom,” said Obour, who graduated this spring. “I’ve been able to focus on what is important, and that’s getting my degree and graduating. But at the same time, I’m not living a lie or not saying what’s on my mind.”