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SavTech marks Black History Month
St. Paul AME Destiny Dancers perform Monday night during Savannah Technical College Liberty Campus Black History Month program. - photo by Photo by Danielle Hipps

More than 60 Savannah Technical College Liberty Campus students on Monday received a lecture that’s not typically given within the school’s halls.
During his Black History Month keynote address, local businessman Kevin Thomas gave the audience a quick primer on setting and achieving their dreams.
The Detroit native who now owns the Auto Super Center among several other enterprises, led with anecdotes about his own path.
“I grew up so poor y’all, I was just po. We couldn’t afford the O and the R …,” he joked, adding that he barely made it out of high school and into the Army. “No matter where you come from, your future is still bright.”
Eight principles, or essential questions, presented in the book “Putting Your Dreams to the Test” by Dr. John Maxwell can help guide us to our dreams, he said.
They included:
1. Ensuring ownership of the dream — that it’s based on one’s own passion and not outside suggestions.
2. Clearly defining the dream, as having vague goals hinders the path to success.
3. Being realistic about whether the dreams are attainable.
4. Mapping a strategy for success.
5. Ensuring the dream is driven by passion because when situations become rough, that is the guiding principle.
6. Surrounding oneself with the right team to ensure success. It includes an encourager, a truth-teller and an insightful advisor.
7. Understanding the financial, physical and emotional costs needed to pursue the dream.
8. Tenacity “begins by winning the battle in the mind, and it overflows into action,” he said.
“You’re never too young or too old to dream … there are 80-year-old people that are still dreaming about what they’re going to do next …,” he said.  “A dream delayed is not a dream denied. Just because a dream that you have, you thought you might have reached it by now — let me encourage you that it’s not been denied. Keep on pushing forward.”
Liberty Campus Dean of Student Affairs Terrie Sellers said the ceremony was a culmination of events that included author visits and entrepreneur speeches.
She invited Thomas to speak knowing that he has an inspiring story and is an engaging speaker.
“That’s what we want to do for our students because all of them are here to aspire for something,” Sellers said. “It was perfect, and I knew he would do that.”
Liberty County District 2 Commissioner Justin Frasier spoke about the importance of advancement and civic engagement, reminding the crowd that historical struggles paved the way for current rights and opportunities.
“Everyone in this room today, we all are free. We have the great opportunity to move forward to follow our dreams, and not only follow our dreams but help your fellow man to help pursue their dreams,” Frasier said. “I can’t do it all my myself, and you can’t do it all by yourself, but together as a people, we’ll be able to move not only Liberty County forward, not only Hinesville forward, but America forward.”
He challenged the audience to consider who will be the next trailblazers to follow in the footsteps of not only national leaders, but local leaders like Rep. Al Williams and Frasier’s father, Charles Frasier, who was the first black elected Hinesville official.
United Ministerial Alliance of Liberty County president Richard Hayes served as master of ceremonies. His daughter, Leah Hayes, and her friend Ayonna James sang “Can’t Give up Now” by Mary Mary.
SavTech student Brenton Jordan performed a series of dances from Senegal, Gambia and Mali. Five young girls also danced on behalf of the St. Paul AME Destiny Dancers.

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