Kyle Gathers delivers BFIT Commencement speech. May 2017.
A year ago, Kyle Gathers ‘17 never imagined he would stand before 700 distinguished faculty, students, friends and family, and deliver the student commencement speech at his BFIT college graduation. Kyle, a native of Grove Hall, went from spending 9 years in jail to becoming a poet, a Kraft Scholar, and a college graduate. This May, he earned a Certificate in Heating, Ventilation, Air-Conditioning, and Refrigeration (HVAC&R) and will go on to a promising future in the HVAC&R industry.
Kyle has a poised and relaxed demeanor which he uses to tell his story— a tale of a bright, thoughtful young man who faced the challenges of a difficult environment, made a life-changing mistake, and with resilience and determination got himself back on the right track. Although his parents had always stressed the importance of a good education, the shooting of his sister (who survived) and the tragic loss of his brother to gun violence had a negative impact on his trajectory.