Bronx Tales II: Leaving Home at 16

It looks like you're using Microsoft Internet Explorer 8.
We are sorry but This Video does not work with Internet Explorer 8.

Personalized for you

Why you should care

Because sometimes the world gives us a better education than the classroom.

This is episode two of the OZY original video series Bronx Tales, featuring Editor-in-Chief Carlos Watson hitting the streets of New York’s most maligned borough to talk about success and failure, race and gentrification and, of course, love and hip-hop.

What do a movie theater ticket taker, an independent bookstore owner and a break-dancing banana have in common? A kick-ass work ethic, for one, and a name: Noëlle Santos. Noëlle, a Bronx native, says she moved out of her family home at age 16 — not to run the streets or join a band — but to find a place where she could focus and set her own terms.

She completed high school early and despite juggling multiple part-time jobs, Noëlle made her way to college and eventually graduate school. Describing herself as a “born hustler” and devotee of social media marketing guru and serial entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk, Noëlle still credits her grandmother, who ran a day care and after-school program, with giving her a nose for enterprise.

Now as founder of The Lit. Bar, an independent bookstore and wine bar coming soon to the Bronx, Noëlle says she is taking the opportunity to provide a much-needed service (and let’s be real, a fun new hangout spot) for her own community.


Interviews, op-eds, and analysis to help you make sense of the news of the day and the news of the future.