TOMS Shoes founder to speak at WT

      Pronews 7's shoes that were up for auction.

      It's become a movement for thousands of students at West Texas A&M University and Thursday, residents and students will have the opportunity to see one of the world's most popular entrepreneurs speak.

      His name is Blake Mycoskie and he is the TOMS Shoes Founder and Chief Shoe giver and he will present a lecture Thursday at 8:30 as part of the university's Distinguished Lecture Series. The event is free to the public at the First United Bank Center.

      Mycoskie founded the popular TOMS Shoes with the simple promise of giving a pair of new shoes to children in need with every pair sold. He uses the power of consumers to make positive social change. Mycoskie as been featured in People magazine and Time. Just two weeks ago, he was named the Person of the Week on ABC World News with Diane Sawyer.

      He is being brought to the area as part of WT's "21 Days of Change."

      It's been 30,240 minutes, 504 hours or three weeks... Any way you describe it, it's 21 days. And for WT, these days have meant a lot.

      It can be summed up with one word.


      Student leaders from across WT's campus have banded together to bring about one of the University's biggest events.It's an event that's become a movement. This movement is meant to inspire, challenge and bring about social change from right here at home to around the globe. Since April 1, WT students have participated in many philanthropic events meant to bring about awareness.

      The 21 day event culminates Thursday evening when the University hosts Mycoskie.

      Chair of the "21 Days of Change" Committee, Dr. Leigh Browning says the University is proud to host him.

      "I think, more than anything else, it ways that WT is in touch with social change issues that are important to our young scholars," Browning said. "If institutions of higher learning do not empower students to engage in dialogue that affect social justice - who will?"

      Browning explained it's just another example of how the University continues to embrace social change.

      "WTAMU has a long tradition of encouraging our students to think about things around them in new, challenging, and very forward thinking ways," she said. "WTAMU has become the venue for addressing social issues of our time. We are proud of that."

      Mycoskie is scheduled to speak at 8:30 at the First United Bank Center in Canyon. The best part about it, it's free to the public!

      "Mr. Mycoskie will be talking about everything from his approach to a service minded corporate model of doing business to providing much needed shoes for those less fortunate," Browning said. "I anticipate that he will inspire all of us to, do what is right...stand up and speak up for those who cannot do that for themselves."

      As for WT students, Browning says the best part about the "21 Days of Change" was that it was student driven and led. Student group BUFFsity, comprised of students from the University yearbook Eternal Flame, University newspaper The Prairie, Buffalo Advertising and campus radio station KWTS, worked in conjunction with the Office of Student Services to put the entire event together. It was through the help of the Distinguished Lecture Series committee and several WT administrators and faculty that this event was possible, Browning said.

      "Students are excited to meet one of today's modern social movers," said BUFFsity student director Tyler Sweeney. "Someone that has started a business with a good intention and students get that. They understand that it's about making the world better, and they want to hear from someone who has done just that."

      Kicking off the evening will be a concert by popular group Hawk Nelson at 6:00. The cost of the concert is $10 or $8 for groups of eight or more. Click here to purchase tickets. All proceeds go to benefit the WTAMU President TMs Community Scholarship Fund. Mycoskie is scheduled to take the stage at 8:30 and guests can arrive beginning around 8.

      For more information on WT's "21 Days of Change," click here.