Xplor your Options

The message behind the Xplor movement


Paige Romig

EJ, AK, and their friends modeling Xpolr merch

More and more people are starting to branch out into the territory of self-made businesses and brands. Within that demographic, there is a surprising number of high school students. They happily devote a portion of their time to the products they’ve worked for. Cy Woods is no stranger to students who have made a name for themselves.

Seniors Ejiroghene (EJ) and Akpevwoghene (AK) Odjighoro have always stuck together. As twins, they go through similar trials in life side-by-side. As a result, it would only make sense for them to create a business with each other. By taking the E’s off of the word explore, they labeled their vision Xplor.

“We make clothing. We’ve had a vision to make clothing since freshman year. It was me and my other close friends and we make a group called Xplor. It was really just about creating, and pushing the mindset of creating. So we said we wanted to make a clothing line and embody that,” AK said.

The group did not have much at the beginning; just a YouTube channel and a message they were hopeful to spread. 

“We just had the idea, we made the YouTube channel, we put some videos up and it had kind of died down [since] we had made it our freshman year. It started to pick back up come junior and senior year,” EJ said. “We knew people who were making their own brands, so we thought ‘Hey, let’s try putting this not just on YouTube, let’s try making a clothing brand out of it.’ [It is about] giving people tangible stuff to refer to whenever they see Xplor. That’s how it sprouted, and then people started buying. I don’t know how. We just wanted to spread a message.”

It was really just about creating, and pushing the mindset of creating.”

— AK Odjighoro

Xplor is meant to inspire people to try and achieve their passions. For some, it may be pursuing a specific talent or career, but for others, it could be creating a business of their own.  

“Sometimes school isn’t for everybody, and there are other ways. You go to school to get a job to get money. So, the end goal is to get money to survive. We are just showing people that there is an alternative way, and they can just turn whatever hobby they have and try to [make a business] off of that,” EJ said.

As Xplor is about finding a passion and exploring it, the brothers decided to branch off into the world of theater arts.

“I do more acting and [EJ] does more of the singing, but we’re starting to bring it together and doing the same thing,” AK said.

This becomes even more evident when looking at their past roles.

“[In theater], my brother was Troy [in “High School Musical”], and then in “The Seagull” I was [Boris] Trigorin and in “Chicago” I was Billy Flynn. That was really fun,” AK said.

The risk of trying something new payed off well for EJ.

“I loved the [“High School Musical”] show actually. Not just because it’s “High School Musical”, but it was my first actual play. I had done one before, but I didn’t do anything in it. So that was my first actual play with lines,” EJ said. “I remember that year, I told my parents that I was going to do theater arts. They said ‘What’re you talking about, why are you doing theater arts?’. Even my friends didn’t want me to do theater arts. But I had a passion; I wanted to do acting and the whole Xplor movement is basically pursuing whatever you want to do. I said, ‘Okay, I’m going to take this to heart and try it.’.”

The brothers embody their movement through clothing, singing and theater. However, it doesn’t stop there. They also try to carry out the movement through school by being apart of Cy Woods’ student government.

“We’re both on Student Council,” AK said. “I’m the Senior Class Secretary and [EJ] is the Senior Class Vice President.”

EJ and AK follow their passions and involve themselves in opportunities where they can grow and enjoy. In short, that’s the message they are trying to spread through all aspects of the Xplor movement.