Medical and wellness expert sought to motivate students and faculty at Towson University to find fulfillment, by asking them to consider what occupation they would do for free.
Dr. Mwata Dyson began his keynote address by asking the audience to think about what they wanted their life’s work to be.
“We all want to be a part of something more,” Dyson said. “How you think about the future determines how you live your life and how you want to be remembered.”
In order to answer this question, he suggested that individuals need to believe and understand who they are and what their core values are. He asked the audience for a show of hands from those who know their core values and are living according to them. In the crowd of over 400 people, very few raised their hands, highlighting the relevance of his challenge.
Towson freshman, Rebecca Palmer, attended the speech as a requirement of her Health 101 class. She was among the few that indicated that she believes and understands who she is and how she wants to live her life.
“I am passionate about helping those get back into what they are passionate about,” Palmer said. “That’s why I’m studying to be a sports physical therapist.”
With this focus in mind, Dr. Dyson offered some practical tips to help people know themselves better. He encouraged the audience to consider what makes them truly happy and to recall what they enjoyed doing as a child.
“I want to debunk the myth that you can only be fulfilled in doing one thing,” Dyson said. “You can be good at multiple things.”
He explained how critical it is to explore different opportunities and to be willing to take risks. Taking these steps will undoubtedly result in failures along the way.
“I like failing,” Dyson said. “It’s the best learning experience. It sticks.”
Peggy Korczak, the director of Towson’s Audiology Doctorate program, has been in the healthcare profession for over 30 years. Dyson’s insight regarding the importance of failing resonated with her.
“I let my students make mistakes,” Korczak said. “Not ones that would hurt the patient of course, but failing is how they learn. They’ll never make the same mistake again.”
After emphasizing the critical role that both accountability and support play as individuals transition into their professional lives, Dyson took a series of questions from the audience. Students were eager to seek his advice and interested to understand who and what inspires him.
“The feedback I have received from Towson University students has inspired me,” Dyson said. “I’ve never been to a forum where the entire question and answer time is taken up because of student’s questions.”
Dr. Dyson is a graduate of Hampton University and Chicago Medical School. Since completing his residency in Anesthesiology at the University of Illinois, he has spent more than a decade in academic and private practice.
His speech was given on the university campus at West Village Commons as part of Towson’s 150th Anniversary Speaker series.