Troy Ave got a chance to speak to 20 high school students at Columbia Teacher's College. The rapper was invited by professor Christopher Emdin to participate in the Hip Hop Education program. Troy Ave talked about his current legal troubles stemming from the deadly shootout at Irving Plaza in May.

“This comes from choices, choices I had to make at the time. It was either fight for my life or fight for my freedom,” he told the students while showing off his ankle monitor. “Now I gotta fight to clear my name.”

Emdin spoke to the New York Daily News about the decision to have Troy speak to his students. The professor felt that the story of redemption was more relevant to his students than the attempted murder and weapons possession charge facing the Brooklyn MC.

"It's always more powerful to show a story of redemption than the story of a hero," Emdin said. "Some of my kids here have been suspended and kicked out and dropped out. Troy has a certain persona and charm and charisma that a lot of folks I've worked with just don't have."

Emdin was introduced to Troy through mutual friend and attorney Allen DeWane, a legal adviser for the rapper. DeWane persuaded Emdin to giving Troy an opportunity.

"When I came to him and said Troy Ave has been misrepresented in the press, when I came to him with certain facts about Troy's case, he rethought Troy Ave like a lot of people need to do," DeWane said.

Troy is scheduled to return to court in January. He is currently dealing with a strict curfew and restrictions that are hampering his ability to earn money, according to his attorney John Stella.

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