Thursday, February 23, 2017

Mentorship Experiences: Breakfast with Fred


It was a great pleasure to welcome the Breakfast With Fred Leadership Institute to campus this week. Brenda Smith, daughter of the late Fred Smith, Sr. (1915-2007), founded BWFLI to make an impact on the next generation of leaders and carry on the legacy of her late father.   

The late Fred Smith Sr. (1915-2007) was a Christian businessman known as a man of wisdom and principle-centered thinking. His career spanned 65 years of executive positions during which he continually mentored leaders. He consulted with corporations like Mobil and Caterpillar, wrote books on leadership, and was a keynote speaker for national sales and marketing groups across the country. 

At the end of his life, Fred Smith, Sr. was known for meeting top executives for breakfast as he mentored and helped others be successful based on his lifetime of experiences. BWFLI continues Fred's legacy by "Stretching and blessing the next generation of leaders, to the glory of God."   

During this two-day event, our students were able to meet with about a dozen highly successful Christian business leaders from diverse professional backgrounds with a wide array of life experiences and faith and work journeys. These mentors shared their stories and experiences in numerous roundtable and classroom discussions and at breakfast, lunch and dinner settings with our students all across our campus and at the Abbott Center. 

Wednesday's featured chapel speaker, Scott Shively, was one of our BWFLI mentors. His involvement in the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award and the Texas Quality Award led Shively to emphasize formal quality principles throughout this last 25 years of full-time employment as he built a successful transportation company.   

Having these high quality Christian business professionals on campus provided our students with the opportunity to learn and develop relationships with leaders who are willing to share those things life has taught them. Six years ago, we hosted BWFLI, and many students developed mentoring relationships then, as well. I appreciate the efforts of our Dean of Students Kristy Morgan and her committee for all the hours or organization and planning to make this BWFLI visit a great success.  

And on another note, today begins the NCAA Division III American Southwest Conference Men's Basketball Conference Tournament on our campus, for the first time in university history. Be sure to welcome our guests on campus and go the extra mile to share hospitality and the love of Christ to the players and their fans and families visiting with us. 

Our YellowJackets play against Sul Ross State at 7:30 p.m. tonight in the Solheim Arena. It would be wonderful to fill the stands. Fear the Sting!

You can see the entire ASC tournament schedule here.