'Survivor' contestant to tell story of triumph over adversity

By Jessica Sinn
University News Service
November 16, 2007

Former “Survivor: Vanuatu” contestant Chad Crittenden will give a motivational presentation at Texas State University-San Marcos 7 p.m. Nov. 19 in the LBJ Ballroom. 

The event, hosted by the Order of Omega Greek Honor Society, is co-sponsored by the Multicultural Greek Council, Pan-Hellenic, National Pan-Hellenic Council and the Interfraternity Council.

Every semester the Order of Omega Greek Honor Society sponsors a guest speaker event for all Greeks. This is the first time the event will be open to all students.

Crittenden will discuss his will, not just to survive, but to live life to its fullest after undergoing a life threatening illness and leg amputation surgery. 

Crittenden’s discussion topics will include:  Discovering the will to survive; the first year experience; getting off on the right foot; and acknowledging diverse minds, bodies and spirits. 

Victoria Botello, Order of Omega Greek Honor Society president, said past guest speakers usually discussed safety and alcohol abuse topics.  This year, she said the Greek honor society decided to switch gears and address the importance of diversity, strength and leadership.   She said she encourages all freshmen to listen to Crittenden’s advice on starting off on the right foot. 

“For freshmen, moving away from home and having full independence for the first time can be a big adjustment,” said Botello, of Laredo.  “So it’s important for someone to remind them that to succeed in school, they need put things in perspective and make the right decisions.” 

Crittenden went on the popular reality TV show, not just for the adventure, but to show millions of viewers that people with amputations and prostheses can be just as active as everyone else.  Botello, a Texas State senior studying business, said students are sure to learn a great deal of insight by listening to Crittenden’s discussions about diversity and breaking down stereotypes. 

“He gained a lot of experience working with so many people from different backgrounds on ‘Survivor,’” Botello said.  “And I think his discussion about diversity will help students understand that they need to learn to work well with people from diverse backgrounds, not just in school but in the working world as well.”  

For more information about the Order of Omega Greek Honor Society, visit www.studentorgs.txstate.edu/orderofomega/.

For more information about Chad Crittenden, www.campusspeak.com/speakers/crittenden/index.php.