Hollywood actor Lamman Rucker introduced Florida A&M University’s Presidential Lecture Series Monday at the Charles Winter Wood Theatre in Tucker Hall with a master class for theatre students and other related majors.
Rucker encouraged students to follow their dreams while straying true to themselves and to give back now to achieve success.
“It doesn’t sound like it makes sense, does it, because the way that we’re taught is that the way to wealth and riches is to give a little as possible and take as much as possible,” Rucker said. “That’s profit, right? That’s not wealth.”
The actor, educator, activist, and entrepreneur also gave theatre students the opportunity to perform on stage. He gave back constructive criticism to each performer and lifelong advice.
Catrina Smith, a fourth-year performance arts major from Gainesville, Fla., said the advice was very helpful.
“I feel like he gave us everything that he knew, he didn’t hold back,” Smith said.
In his speech, Rucker told students to get in touch with nature in order to fulfill the miracle of life. He recalled moments with his encounters on conflict and how he reacted to them.
“It’s up to you to choose whether you were even insulted in the first place,” Rucker said. “You all have so much control over your own destiny.”
Jamel Booth, a third-year facilities management student from Miami,. said he liked when Rucker said things aren’t just about you.
“A lot of times when we get up there [on stage] as artists, and even I’m guilty of this in some cases, going up there thinking it’s just to prove yourself or show how talented you are when that’s not your purpose for being on stage,” Booth said.
Rucker was featured in motion pictures such as “Why Did I Get Married?” “Why Did I Get Married Too?” “Meet the Browns” and more. He’s starring in the new film, “The Man in 3B.”
Rucker is a graduate of the Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington, D.C. He is a founding ensemble member of the Black Gents of Hollywood, composed of an all-black male theatre company based in Los Angeles. Rucker is an activist and spokesperson for several non-profit organizations such as A.H.E.A.D., Inc., Inner City Industry, BET’s Rap-It-Up campaign, and more.
The Presidential Lecture Series will bring global leaders from various areas to inspire and enlighten FAMU students.
FAMU President Elmira Mangum said the series will feature individuals in significant areas.
“It will also support our core values in this community and university,” Mangum said.