Monday, May 21, 2007

DEAR GETONMYMAP: I Think My Graduation Speech Went Over My Former Classmate's Heads

By Julie Dirks
Bachelor of Arts, Business - Arizona State University Class of 2007

Don't get me wrong, I loved my time at ASU. Being a Sun Devil is a lifelong journey, one which I have only started since commencement which was two weeks ago this Thursday. But there's this nagging thought I can't drop and I hoped you'd be able to share this with your readers. Did my former classmates even "get" that we were all but past the first step of our adulthood? At the time of my speech, I was so nervous that all I could focus on were my ideas about commitment, community and scholarship. I really didn't pay much attention to the crowd - a No No to my public speaking professor for sure. But I was so sure they'd get my point about life's journeys, and how we'd just begun one of the biggest ones of all, that I couldn't tell if they'd bothered to let my message soak in. Watching the tape my mother made from the stands only goes to strengthen my worst fears. Whether they were planning to pursue a graduate degree, a lucrative job in journalism or business, or even just take the next few months to "chill out", it doesn't appear, on video anyway, that my fellow students were really getting my point.

At about the 13 minute mark, where I mentioned my study abroad program in Spain and how important it is for all of them to try and spend some time working with the underpriveleged overseas, I could swear I heard somebody say, "Get on with it!" How rude, if that's what he or she was really saying. But I know from years of schooling that sometimes even the smartest students cannot really be grabbed attention-wise with speeches. You have to get them on the ground floor and let them learn for themselves. I really hope my classmates who were not reached with my speech eventually learn this important life mantra: to be a truly great Sun Devil, we must take this time now to pursue our dreams, our goals, and our entire lives with the spirit and joy that we all had during our time at ASU.

I know I will, especially since I'll be starting a wonderful career in management consulting in Phoenix, AZ - it's something I could never have achieved without the love of my family, my friends, all my wonderful peers and professors at ASU, and the Lord our God.

Dream, Act...NOW. I couldn't have put it better myself.

Thanks GetOnMyMap for helping me spread my message to your readers.


:) <3

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