To the Class of 2016: Go Well, Go Far, Go Big

Address by Dr. Benjamin Akande, President, to the Class of 2016
at Westminster College, Fulton, Missouri on May 7, 2016

Faculty, students, staff, alumni, family, guests and most importantly, the 2016 graduates of Westminster College.

Today, we all stop and devote ourselves to honoring your accomplishments. We gather to honor each of you for the completion of one great task… and yet it is the beginning of another … the task of applying your talents and education to change society. For these past years you have done what the faculty have asked of you. All of you have demonstrated courage – there can be no courage unless we are scared. Courage is doing what we are afraid to do.

So today we do what you ask of us – to declare your work complete, to declare you ready and to grant you’re re-admittance into this great society: this world of opportunity. Remember, success belongs to those who are change ready, and that the best opportunities are visible but not seen.

And so, we welcome you to the world of opportunity. And now that you are full members, we can let you in on a little secret. Your work has just begun. Although you have received a good education and soon you will receive your hard earned diploma, we are hopeful that while you were here at Westminster College we gave you the skill sets that will serve you well in the days and months and years ahead: optimism, enthusiasm, determination and perseverance. Clearly we know you have all of these attributes in abundance, or you wouldn’t be here today. So, I ask that you seize the moment for it is already later than you think.

Graduate, I give you one last homework assignment. I want you to go and save one life, get involved, lift someone up. My charge to you is go to that future you make for yourselves as you make your way in this remarkable world of ours.

I say to you: go well. Go far. Go big. Go. Go. Go.Class of 2016 Columns


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