2018 Convocation Speech

June 5, 2018, 2 p.m.
School of Communication
School of Legal Studies

Congratulations graduates on your magnificent achievements. I salute the many of you who managed to finish your degrees in only 4 years. (OK some of you maybe a little bit longer.) You see, it took me decades to get where you are standing now.

You may wonder why it took me so long. (Believe me, my parents are here today wondering the same thing.) I thought about it, and my best answer is that it just did. You see, life doesn't always follow a straight path. For some of you it will: you'll finish school, get a job, settle down, maybe start a family. But others of you will follow a different path. And to you, I say embrace it. I myself have had many, many lives before I got to Cap. Maybe you also have a different path ahead. Perhaps you want to start a business. Or write a book. Or go to grad school. Or run for public office. Whatever it is, go for it.

But know that with making choices comes trade-offs. There's an old phrase that says "you can have anything you want, you just can't have everything you want." So I encourage you to pick what is really, really important to you and then go after it with everything you've got.

And if you're not sure yet what is truly important to you, that's OK too. I encourage you to explore. Travel the world. Meet new people and try new things. But above all, be curious about everything and everyone, because each person you will meet has a story to tell and something they can teach you.

I encourage all of you to get involved in your community. We've all had many group projects together. I have seen what you are capable of, and every one of you has something amazing to offer. So don't let being young and inexperienced stop you. Because then you'll just be old and inexperienced.

The important thing, is to start. Because, no matter what path you choose or where life takes you, it's never too late to change course or try something new. And if need be, it's never too late to just start over.

As a final thought, I'd like to acknowledge our fabulous professors, and my incredibly tolerant husband for his unwavering support. I hope you will take a moment to thank those special people who helped you in your journey. And most of all, celebrate yourselves. You earned this. And an education is something that no one can ever take from you. So congratulations Class of 2018 – I wish you love and success in whatever path you choose.

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