Tenacious Leaders Help Students Shape Their Future Trajectory

As part of the Texas A&M University-Commerce College of Business’s continued efforts to develop and promote platforms that provide A&M-Commerce students as well as those in the community with opportunities to connect, develop, and network with experts in various fields, the college launched its latest initiative called “Tenacious Leader Tuesday” in November, 2023.

Organized by the COB Career Services, the platform was developed to help bridge the gap between the student-career journey, the power of landing internships, and understanding what it takes to be industry leaders in an informal setting that allows the leaders to share their career journeys with all levels of students from current to post graduate.

Courtney Brazile, a communications professor at Dallas College, moderated the diverse leadership panel, which focused on industry-specific college and career journey conversations with several of Dallas’s business executives. Among the leadership panelists were returning COB guest speaker and SVP of Marketing at Verizon Abhi Vyas, Ivonne Kinser from Vantage Innovation Lab, David Westberry from Bridgestreet Partners, and alum Ezi N. from Okigwe Creations.

The questions led the panelists to vividly describe the people who have been or still are pillars in their lives. The resilience felt in the room encouraged students to learn more about embracing the fear of initial failure and to understand their true capabilities with self-assurance, as well as take advantage of the resources provided for them through their Career Services office.

Students from the College of Business attended the event alongside several of the college's faculty and staff members in addition to several students from Dallas College as well as alumni. Kinser, Westberry and Vyas left the audience with some inspirational tips that empowered all attendees to have a better understanding of where they are now in life and where they can be with a healthy mindset for the future.

Kinser discussed with the attendees the imperativeness of never missing an opportunity to make an impact in someone's life, as so many have done the same for her which helped her to achieve where she is today. Additionally, Westberry talked with the students about the importance of internships and how they can help students secure a job, as it did in his case when he began to work for KPMG. Vyas encouraged students to strive and to continue to learn and grow. He shared his interpretation of the word ‘FAIL’ as an acronym that stands for ‘First Attempt In Learning’ and how that helps create a self-observation that when you fail, you can learn from your mistakes and make those improvements, and it doesn't mean it is an END, which he also believes is an acronym that stands for ‘Effort Never Dies.’

Current students and alumni from the College of Business were left with a closing statement on technology and AI from alumnus Ezi N. He commented that in society, we are not behind, but we are just getting started, and the use of AI is to understand that it is a quicker tool for productivity. However, the reality is that it will never have the value or creative spin of a human.