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Amid the hallowed halls of Tuskegee University Chapel, a timeless tradition was celebrated as the Rites of Passage Ceremony welcomed the class of 2027. This year's ceremony was made even more special by the presence of distinguished speaker Don'Angelo Bivens '98, a Tuskegee alumnus who has since become a renowned executive coach, facilitator, and speaker.
Don'Angelo Bivens has made a name for himself by helping leaders worldwide understand and improve human behavior and performance. With over two decades of experience, he has coached leaders from diverse industries, from healthcare to technology, and has facilitated discussions on topics ranging from equity and inclusion to adaptable leadership.
His address was marked by his engaging, direct, and compassionate style, encouraging the new Tuskegee students to embrace their journey as life can be uncertain. He shared his story of giving up his career to move home to care for his father and taking a job making only $29,000.
"Your purpose is whatever it is you choose to do,” he said. “It will have an impact on someone and something always, even in the midst of your stillness, you have an impact. When you feel like you have no voice, you have an impact."
Bivens' journey from Tuskegee University to becoming a seasoned executive coach underscores the transformative power of education. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from Tuskegee University and a Master of Science in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Missouri State University.
Following Bivens' address, the ceremony's highlight was the Tuskegee Gentleman and Women Pledge, a commitment to excellence, integrity, and community engagement. As the incoming first-year students recited the pledge, their voices echoed through the historic Tuskegee University Chapel, marking their official acceptance into the Tuskegee community.
The students, now officially Tuskegee University first-year students, also participated in a symbolic pinning ceremony. This act signified the trust and faith that the university places in its students and the enduring legacy to which they now belong.
As these new scholars embark on their Tuskegee journey, they carry with them the wisdom and inspiration of Don'Angelo Bivens and the commitment to excellence exemplified by the Tuskegee Gentleman and Women Pledge. Tuskegee University's Rites of Passage Ceremony continues to mold leaders who will positively impact their communities and the world, keeping the university's noble traditions alive for generations to come.
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