The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Talk offers hope

Ryon Anderson spoke Oct. 9 on SE about not letting his blindness keep him from success. Photo courtesy Ryon Anderson

By Melisa Handley/reporter

Speaker discusses overcoming challenges

A business consultant and social media marketing professional visited SE Campus Oct. 9 to share his story of how blindness didn’t stop him from achieving success. 

At age 11, Ryon Anderson became blind and partially paralyzed due to a brain abscess. Originally wanting to be an NFL quarterback, he found himself chasing new dreams due to his circumstances.

“Life is long,” Anderson said. “It’s a journey. It’s going to have its ups and downs. It’s about overcoming your losses and consistently improving at least 1 percent every day.”

After earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s in counseling psychology from Tarleton State University, Anderson earned a law degree at Texas Tech. 

After taking a Myers-Briggs test, Anderson learned psychology and law were his strong points. Although not a lawyer, he said his law degree has helped him in his career.

Now Anderson runs 512 Media, a business consulting firm in Austin. He encouraged students to never give up regardless of circumstances. 

“It’s only a failure if you quit,” he said.

SE student development specialist Chelsea Garrison said Anderson’s speech tied in well with National Disability and Employment Awareness Month in October.

“I coordinated this event in the hope that people could see beyond a person’s disability and could see that people with disabilities are indeed very capable of successful careers,” Garrison said. “Ryon has a very positive attitude and mindset, and he is a person who truly believes in himself.” 

What Garrison hoped students take away from the event was Anderson’s mindset over his situation. 

“I hope that students felt empowered and hopeful despite any of their own current challenges and could see that they too can successfully, strongly contribute in the workforce and community,” she said.

Anderson said he wanted his story to inspire others.

“Everyone has challenges,” he said. “Don’t let anyone hold you back.”

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