West Point Karate School graduates five students

(L to R): Undrea Lee, Teyia Perry, Hashia Williams, Alexander Lee, and Kren Posley
Staff Writer

Five of Sunsei Albert Lee’s students at West Point Karate School recently graduated with their yellow belt. Kren “Scooter” Posley, 8, Teyia Perry, 8, Undrea Lee, 7, Hashia “Shy Shy” Williams, 7, and Alexander Lee, 5, each earned their yellow belt on Dec. 16.

“These kids had certain things to learn in between their belts to test for before they could go on to the next level,” Lee said. “I appreciate all the hard work that the students give us and we’re appreciative of the parents for trusting in us to train those kids.” In karate, there are certain skills that students must master before graduating to the next level, or belt. Students begin with the white belt, which signifies that he or she is a beginner, and can earn all the way to a 5th-degree back belt.

“In our system, when you get to purple or brown (belts), those are called advanced belts,” Lee said. “With advanced belts, you learn a lot more material and the training becomes just a bit more difficult. With every level, you learn more per rank.”

As far as the black belt is concerned, Lee said someone can come in with a black belt from another karate style, but would still be required to learn their style.

“We would welcome you in, but there’s a learning process and you still have to learn our material,” Lee said. “We don’t discredit someone who comes from a different style, we welcome everybody.”

Lee said most of the graduating students have been training under him from six months to a year. He and Master Jimmy Nash are the owners and operators of the West Point Karate School.

The school trains approximately 50 to 60 students and there is no specific age to begin training, however, Lee says it is recommended that the child be at least four or five years old.

“Anything under that, your attention span and level of understanding is just not going to be there,” Lee said. “However, we will work with whatever age is willing to grace the doors.”

The school also participates in roughly seven or eight out of state tournaments per year.

Students will be traveling to Jacksonville, North Carolina in February to compete.

“We take the kids and they do very well,” Lee said. “It helps their training. Any time you can take what you know and test it against other schools and do well, that says something about your training.”

Lee is also a lieutenant for the West Point Police Department, where he has served the community for 18 years.