[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/06/14/art.webb.jpg
caption=”Josh Shipp, 28, dishes out ‘advice with attitude’ to teens.”]
Our generation doesn’t have a “Dear Abby,” but we do have a “Hey, Josh.” Josh Shipp offers up “advice with attitude” to Generation Y. He says he reaches the audience too old for “Bob the Builder” and too young for Oprah and Dr. Phil.
In his 28 years, Josh has collected a lot of adventures to draw on for advice. He grew up as a foster kid, dealing with suicidal thoughts, abuse and general teenage angst. He got in trouble in class one day for talking. “When you make your friends laugh they’re listening to you. Now, what will you say to them?” Josh remembers his teacher saying to him. “It really struck a nerve with me,” he says.
Josh reached that captive peer audience with a Web site that generated 100,000 emails in the first year. He has written an advice column in CosmoGirl and slings advice on MTV’s TRL. “I want kids to know that it’s not about your past but it’s about your future. Past challenges don’t matter. Those things are part of your story but not your whole story. Life is about attitude and choices,” Josh says of the underlying message to all of his advice.
Update: Watch the CNN.com Live interview