Welcome to the first Spring Semester 2017 issue of FAMU Forward, wherein we share the exciting achievements of our students, faculty, staff and alumni with the world!
On last week our nation paused to pay tribute to a great American leader and servant, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The ideals and examples laid forth by Dr. King and those who heeded his call during the height of the Civil Rights Movement, are indicative of the dedication we must maintain as Rattlers in order to ensure Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University remains a leader in higher education. National Alumni Association chapters around the nation held an impressive array of meaningful activities in support of their communities and our National Day of Service initiative. Who more than Rattlers are inclined to share their successes with those still in need?
In this issue you will have an opportunity to learn more about FAMUans past and present who have displayed this same commitment to service and have also excelled along the way. You will enjoy a story on Margaret W. Lewis, Ph.D., a recent Fallen Rattler and retired Dean of the School of Nursing, whose inspirational leadership served as a catalyst for excellence among faculty and students. Inspiring articles are presented on Professor Seth Ablordeppey, Ph.D., of the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, who recently received an “Outstanding Mentor Award” and current FAMU student Alexandria Washington, who was recently crowned Miss Black Florida U.S. Ambassador.
With the true meaning of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday in our hearts and a new semester of promise and opportunity underway at FAMU, I encourage all Rattlers to reflect on how you can best make a difference in the lives of others. Doing so will not only benefit you personally; it will also help establish a precedent of goodwill and hope that will permeate within our homes and communities across the nation.
Although much work remains in order for America to reach its greatest potential, we must all be willing to do our parts to ensure achieving such a feat comes to past. And for those of you who may know others who have given up, or are discouraged and disillusioned, please endeavor to ignite a new sense of hope in them and a conviction to the faith that inspired the great Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and those around him.
His wife Ms. Coretta Scott King once said:
“Freedom is never really won; you earn it and win it in every generation.”
And in Dr. King’s own words from the “I Have A Dream” speech in Washington, D.C., August 28, 1963:
“We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of Now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy.”
So Rattlers, in the spirit of Dr. and Mrs. King’s great vision and challenge, let us challenge one another to be the instruments of hope and change for those in need today and those yet unborn. By doing so, I am optimistic and confident that great stories will continue to be told about Rattlers for generations to come as a result of your dedication, commitment and good will.