It was during my fourth semester at FVSU when Dr. Rivers graced us with his presence. At the time I was taking a full load - and carrying one too - as I was pregnant with my second child, Robert Brandon. Drained with fatigue, I hadn’t the opportunity to attend any functions other than classes, so didn’t meet Dr. Rivers until summer 2006.
By that time, I was seven months into my gestation and it showed. I had just completed an overnight shift in a busy newsroom. I mustered up the energy to witness my best bud and fellow mass communication major, Chaquasha D. Tomlin, graduate magna cume laude during Fort Valley’s summer commencement ceremony.
After the ceremony was over, I weaved my way through the crowd. As I waddled across the Health and Physical Education Complex floor, Dr. Rivers approached me. He stopped what he was doing, placed his hand on my protruding belly and exclaimed, “This is a future Wildcat!” My son was predestined from the womb by our fearless leader to walk in greatness at our fine university.
To our incoming freshmen I say, “Hats off.” You’ve made a wise decision. To the parents I say, “at ease.” Dr. Rivers took the time during such a busy and historic moment, one of his first commencements as President of his alma mater, to let me know that he cared about the matriculation of my unborn son. This same consideration will be given to your children as well.
--Stacie Barrett works for the Office of Marketing and Communications at Fort Valley State University
There will be two more pre-orientation events prior to the start of fall semester: July 11 and July 18. For more information, please call 478-825-6307