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Emmy-winner Timothy Alexander to address Calhoun student symposium

DECATUR — Emmy Award-winning speaker Timothy Alexander will address the 14th annual Student Success Symposium at Calhoun Community College on Thursday.

Alexander, an author, minister, and life coach, will speak at 9:30 a.m. in the Kelley Gymnasium at Calhoun’s Decatur campus and at 12:30 p.m. in the Sparkman Building Student Center at the Huntsville campus.

The theme is “We don’t need it to be easy, we just need it to be possible.” Both sessions are free and open to all students.

Perseverance, faith, determination and beating the odds are a few words that describe the path Alexander’s life has taken. The Birmingham native attended Erwin High School and was ranked the No. 8 high school football player in the state. He had the opportunity to play for any college in the country before a car wreck in 2006 left him paralyzed from the neck down.

From that point on, Alexander was left to find his purpose in life while paralyzed. That is when he learned he didn’t need things to be easy for him in his new life, he just needed them to be possible to attain.

“The first time I heard Timothy Alexander’s story was during one of the college’s professional development sessions, and to say I was blown away by his positive demeanor and strong will to overcome the tough obstacles life has thrown at him would be a complete understatement,” said Dr. Patricia Wilson, Calhoun vice president of Student Services. “Timothy is one of those people that you naturally gravitate towards as he truly has a great outlook on life.

“He has a realistic story that doesn’t always include the happy moments, but he shows what resilience looks like when he ensures any situation is possible if you try, and that is what our students need to hear.”

Alexander attended Wallace State Community College, and upon graduation, enrolled at the University of Alabama at Birmingham where he double majored in criminal justice and communication management.

While at UAB, he was the first paraplegic to receive a football scholarship. He was also runner-up for Mr. UAB, a member of Omega Psi Phi, and the former president of UAB Gang Green who set two school attendance records during UAB’s basketball season. He received the Student of Excellence Award because of his academic/athletic performance.

Alexander completed his undergraduate career by receiving the Col. Leo Thorsness “Courage Award” from the Youth Leadership Development Program and was also awarded the “Challenge Coin” from Command Sgt. Maj. Bennie Adkins.

He graduated from UAB with a master’s degree in communication management.

A video of Alexander standing up on his own for the first time since being paralyzed, went viral in July 2016, catching the attention of ABC News, TMZ Sports, and other news stations worldwide.

Timothy was nominated in 2016 as the Sports Program Feature for the 31st Midsouth Regional Emmy awards of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. In 2017, he was named the Emmy Award winner.

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