Our Story 

Taylor Chao says that she was studying in the foyer of Dwight Beeson Hall a few days ago when a "man in a suit came in, looking confused."  Naturally, she asked if she could help.  He was searching for a conference room on the third floor, so she walked with him to the room, then resumed her studying in the foyer.  A few minutes later, the fellow returned, explaining that the group was at the Rotunda Club.  "Do you know where that is?" he asked.  Taylor affirmed that she did, and that she would show him the way.  Over his protest, she began to walk with him toward the Rotunda Club--and then they learned that the group he sought was headed back to Dwight Beeson Hall.  In the intervening minutes, the man asked Taylor if she planned to attend the panel session in a few minutes in Brock Forum.  She said that she was planning to do so.  He thanked her, introduced himself as Donta' Wilson, and gave her his card.  Taylor says, "I thought, 'wow,' I didn't know I was talking with the president of BB&T Bank!" 

In the session to follow, Mr. Wilson was asked the describe the most important thing our students could take with them into the business world.  He said, "Take a deep understanding of people.  Take a psychology course and learn what people need from you and how best to interact--things like going out of your way to help someone."  And then Mr. Wilson told about his arrival on campus that day, how a young lady named Taylor had noticed that he was confused, and how she took the initiative to help him.  Then he said, "Taylor does not know that I'm about to do this, but I am going to provide a $500 scholarship to recognize her kindness and her helpful attitude." 

The world is better because of Taylor Chao, Donta' Wilson, and Samford. 


About Samford University – Samford University is a premier nationally ranked private university deeply rooted in its Christian mission. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th oldest institution of higher education in the United States. U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 4th among regional universities in the South. Samford enrolls 5,619 students from 44 states, the District of Columbia and 29 other countries in its 10 academic units: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy, and public health. Samford also fields 17 NCAA Division I teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference.