A crowd of over 2,200 students and community members filled Corbett Sports Center on the campus of North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, April 11 to hear a graceful, thunderous message of motivation and empowerment by T.D. Jakes, master communicator, multidimensional businessman and international thought leader. Jakes was the spring 2019 featured guest for the Chancellor’s Speaker Series.
Known for his eloquent and extensive vocabulary, Jakes began by painting a picture of all the ancestors who paved the way for every student to be sitting in the audience seats they occupied. His descriptive portraits of enslaved persons who endured heartache so that succeeding generations could excel, culminated with one simple truth about the initial pathway to “Living Your Best Life”– you must first know and appreciate from whence you’ve come.
Continuous applause, rapt attention and nods of approval were indicative of the night’s success. Jakes masterfully merged the series theme and principles of his soon-to-be-released book, “Crushing.” His quotes of motivation and inspiration echoed the sentiments of understanding, developing and embodying the strength and fortitude to regroup and continue forward even in the midst of what may seem to be a “crushing” defeat.
“How you withstand the crushing is what’s on trial in your life right now … are you tough enough to withstand what’ you’re up against,” questioned Jakes. “If you’re not careful, you’ll think the crushing is there to destroy you … but because you fought back when you didn’t think you could come back, you’re really strong and tenacious.”
Having recognized their own power to succeed beyond present and seemingly crushing circumstances, attendees were standing to their feet by conclusion of the event, armed with concepts for living their best lives.
Students in attendance were given advance copies of “Crushing.”
Jakes is the latest in a long and growing list of top names who have come to A&T as part of the Chancellor’s Speaker Series and Chancellor’s Town Hall Series. They include Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, award-winning entertainer Common, former White House Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett and Shark Tank star and entrepreneur Daymond John.
The Chancellor’s Town Hall series will follow Jakes’ appearance later this month with an event featuring actresses Chloe x Halle, Loretta Devine and Jasmine Guy.