Students participating in Carnival’s Scholarship & Mentoring program recently had a special guest speaker – Carnival Corporation & plc President and CEO Arnold Donald who spoke at length about his varied life and career which has taken him from humble beginnings in his hometown of New Orleans to his current position overseeing one of the world’s largest leisure travel companies.

During his hour-long talk, Donald spoke about the importance of perseverance, setting goals and striving to do your best, citing many examples of challenges and obstacles he’s faced over the years. Donald also detailed his varied business career, which has included senior management positions in the engineering and agricultural fields and running one of the world’s largest non-profit organizations to Carnival Corporation & plc board member and, eventually, the company’s president and CEO.  Following his talk, he opened up the floor for questions and took time to pose for photos with the students.

Now in its seventh year, the Scholarship & Mentoring Program pairs nearly 100 Miami-Dade high school students with a member of Carnival’s management team to provide a first-hand look at the business world through monthly visits to the company’s headquarters in Doral. Over the past seven years, there have been more than 180 Carnival/student matches facilitated by Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Miami.  Carnival has also presented nearly 60 students with scholarships and has purchased 165 scholarships valued at $2 million that will be awarded over the next several years.