The guardrails are off and life is now a marathon. These are the three lessons I leave you with: find your grounding, fail upwards, and enjoy the journey.
It is finally your moment for gowns, mortarboards, speeches, bagpipers, marching bands, swing bands, last-chance dances, and champagne toasts. Harvard — and all of us — are all dressed up and waiting for you. Welcome back, Classes of 2020 and 2021! The time for our long-awaited reunion is finally here.
I hope that, after you graduate today, you will remember the lessons of this experience. Do something with the enormous privilege that is a Harvard education. Try to make the world a better place.
The world changes Harvard, and Harvard changes us. In some small way, we can complete the loop: change Harvard and the world, too. Now is the time to think about how.
Each of you deserves joy and justice. We can’t wait to see where you find it.
What time is it on the clock of the world? Your time. It is your time to chart the stars and fly hard and fast until you grab them, raining down light on this tainted ground that you will inherit. Congratulations on your graduation and all the goodness you will bring to our broken, yet beautiful, world.
We live in an era that tends to reward volume and certainty. Those who speak loudly often convey great passion. Passion is a powerful force: It has driven my commitment to access and opportunity in and beyond higher education. But it is not enough. In addition to passion, you need reason.