Breaking Bad star speaks to 200

Yareli Lora

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At the second Artist-Lecture Series, R.J. Mitte speaks to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities, Oct 18. Photo by Bridget Reilly

At the second Artist-Lecture Series, R.J. Mitte speaks to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities, Oct 18. Photo by Bridget Reilly

As part of his self- proclaimed mission to educate students about living with disability, bullying, and taking risks, Breaking Bad actor RJ Mitte spoke last night as part of the Artist-Lecture Series in the Akin Auditorium.

“I go to different schools and talk to them about different things but I’m here to mainly talk about disability, bullying, and fears that most people have. Not that many people are properly educated about disability and all of the challenges that one faces. I think we’re all disabled in our own way,” Mitte said.

Mitte portrays the fictitious character Walter Flynn White Jr., a teen that has cerebral palsy and the son of  chemist known as The Heisenberg. In reality, the 24-year-old actually has a mild case of cerebral palsy, having been diagnosed when he was 3.

Since his role from Breaking Bad, Mitte has taken on another role in life — he is a celebrity ambassador for United Cerebral Palsy. Mitte chose to be a part of the organization in 2011 to raise awareness about issues related to others with cerebral palsy. In the auditorium filled with 200 people, mostly women, Mitte discussed the importance of reaching out to young people about these issues in hopes to change their perspectives about people with disabilities. 

“There’s only so much you can do. Yes, one person can have an impact in the world but it takes many to change it,” Mitte said.

Mitte is not only involved with United Cerebral Palsy, but he is also involved with another organization that raises awareness about equality and diversity — National Disability Institute’s Real Economic Impact Tour and “I Am PWD.” Mitte is passionate about going to high schools, colleges, and universities around the country and sharing how he achieved his goals and overcame obstacles to the youth.

“I’ve come a long way to get to where I am now and I’m just here to share my personal experience for others to hear in hopes to inspire them to get over their fears and to just take risks and chase after whatever it is that they’re after in life,” Mitte said.

Mitte has been traveling to motivate college students to take risks regardless of the challenges that are thrown their way.

“I have a voice and I plan to use it to my full ability. It’s been such an incredible feeling to reach out to people close to my age. I want to motivate people to step out of their comfort zone and to let them know that it’s okay to take risks,” Mitte said.

Mitte is originally from Lafayette, Louisiana. Mitte and his family moved to Hollywood, California in 2006 to pursue an acting career of his younger sister. Mitte said he has been everywhere around the country — he has even passed through Wichita Falls before. While in Los Angeles he worked with a talent agent that later encouraged Mitte to pursue acting. Mitte has been featured in different shows such as Weeds, Switched at Birth, Everybody Hates Chris, Mitte landed his first role as a regular on the Disney Show Hannah Montana in 2006 as a regular student in a classroom. In 2008, Mitte landed a role in Breaking Bad. He became a regular on the show. He appeared on the show for five seasons. Mitte played the character of someone with cerebral palsy. Even though Mitte has mild Cerebral palsy, he had to research the character and learn challenges in order to convey his fictional character. In the show he had to slur his speech and walk on crutches.

“Breaking Bad allowed for me to have more opportunities and I am very grateful for that,” Mitte said.

Aside from Mitte’s busy schedule between constantly flying out to other schools to make speeches and constant interviews, Mitte enjoys his free time by watching sports and listening to music along with being a DJ. Mitte laughed and smiled widely as he said he loves all genres of music.

“My playlist consists of so many different genres ranging from electronic, country, new wave, rock, and just so much more,” Mitte said. “The variety is unreal.”

Mitte also enjoys hanging out with his friends, and both playing and watching sports.

“I have other friends who are also DJs. I hung out with DJ Tiger Lilly not too long ago,” Mitte said. “I also love watching sports. I watched most of the Olympics, I’m honestly a little burned out from it now but I enjoy playing any sport. I love the challenge.”

The next Artist-Lecture Series speaker is Kip Fulbeck on Nov. 11 at 7 p.m. in Akin Auditorium.

mitte

Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly
Second artist lecture series held by R.J. Mitte, speaking to students at the Akin Auditorium on the importance of tackling fears, combatting bullying and the stigma behind disabilities. Oct 18, 2016. Photography by Bridget Reilly

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