2012 First-Year Convocation Program and Induction Ceremony Keynote Speaker
The 2012 First-Year Convocation Program and Induction Ceremony keynote speaker will be KSU alumni, Gip Gayle. Gip (Richard Gipson Gayle, Jr.) grew up in Lawrenceville, Georgia, where he attended Collins Hill High School and played on the school's baseball and football teams. He has also worked as a Little League umpire and spends time volunteering at youth sports camps as well as Young Life summer camps. Gip graduated from Collins Hill in 2003, and was headed off to college, filled with hopes and dreams just like many other high school graduates.
But with only three weeks into his first year of college, Gip was shot in the head in a horrible hunting accident. He was not expected to survive. He has endured over 25 surgeries and procedures and spent several years in treatment and rehabilitation, but was determined to continue pursuit of his college dream. After five grueling years of recovery, Gip enrolled at KSU in the Fall of 2008 where he spent the next four years diligently working toward his life's dream of earning a college degree. In May of 2012, Gip received his Bachelor of Science degree in Integrative Studies, in the areas of Leadership and Coaching. He continues to live in Lawrenceville, GA and remains active in the community and in his church.
Gip's emotional and powerful comeback story of survival, perseverance, and triumph is, without a doubt, one of the most effective tools in his coach's manual. But Gip's message extends beyond the playing field: he is also a Life Coach, embracing the opportunity he's been given to help others understand the importance of faith, family, and friends in confronting life's challenges--and winning.