S. Tanner Stafford lecture series emphasizes leadership

Mr. Donald Mitchell awarded certificate of appreciation. Photo by Josiah George

This past Friday, Florida A&M University’s School of Allied Health Sciences held their annual S. Tanner Stafford Lecture series. Mr. Donald E. Mitchell was the guest speaker who delivered the importance of leadership, consistency and shared his career journey.

Students were able to hear about the importance of being a leader in their everyday life. Mitchell’s inspiration came from his mother who did not have much education and was raised in a low poverty household.

Mitchell spoke on his decision to enroll in the United States Navy after two years of college.

“The navy offered me opportunities that I could not get on my own. It was one of the smartest decisions that I made in my life,” said Mitchell.

The lecture series continued to express the importance of leadership by describing Mitchell’s responsibility of being a healthcare professional in the Navy. Mitchell mentioned how to gain respect from the other sailors.

“No matter what color or cultural differences anyone was, I still treated everyone with the same respect on a daily basis,” Mitchell said. “When you take care for your patients, they will take care of you in return.”

S. Tanner Stafford’s family with guest speaker Dr. Donald Mitchell. Photo by Josiah George

With social media being the leading movement of today’s society, Mitchell made sure to emphasize the importance of knowing the repercussions when posting things online.

“Thought has to be put in before a post is made,” said Mitchell. “Being careful of who you associate with because presentation is everything”.

Mitchell made it clear to credit his involvement in different organizations to his success. Networking was key to his success with his career goals.

Fellow nursing major, Leilah Clark, attended the event and felt it was beneficial in shaping her mindset from that point forward.

“Leadership qualities are something that I need to inhibit more in my lifestyle,” Clark said. “It is the motivation I needed seeing someone very successful and growing up with not as many resources that was available to him. I was excited to hear about his life journey and he inspired me as well.”

Dean of Allied Health Sciences, Cynthia Hughes Harris, spoke on how the presentation was effective and aspiring for the event.

“I am impressed with Mitchell speaking on the importance of leadership,” said Hughes. “Maximizing your potential is all that I ask of you. The history of S. Tanner Stafford is the fiber of our school and your message is easily generalized to other fields outside of Allied Health.”

“If I can affect one person, then my job is done. The goal of being the change in someone’s life, is very important on a daily basis, “said Mitchell.

A certificate of appreciation from Dean Harris was given to Mitchell for being the guest speaker for the S. Tanner Stafford lecture series.