To the Class of 2016: Be bold in your expectations of yourself
University President Marc Johnson has a final message for the Class of 2016
To the members of the Class of 2016:
Congratulations on reaching this milestone in your lives. You have worked extremely hard to reach this point. As you turn your attention to the road you plan on following after graduation, I want you all to know that we are extremely proud of you. As graduates of the University of Nevada, Reno, you have an important responsibility. You are now among the leaders in our world - leaders who will help us all realize the possibility and potential of humankind.
Leadership brings with it a myriad of expectations. Chief among them is forging positive and productive relationships with all people. This is an earnest, sometimes difficult process. It can be challenging and frustrating, and often requires much patience and deliberation. Your University training, which has focused on experiential learning and the foundational principles of discernment and critical thinking, will serve you well in these instances. Making this extra effort - to listen as well as to talk, to hear as well as to speak - will help you be successful in whatever field you choose. This, I think, is the essence of humanity - our ability to combine vast amounts of knowledge with an ability to have empathy and understanding for all those we meet throughout our lives.
Over the past four years, I have been so impressed with the work that many of you have done. I've been moved by your artistic and athletic performances, impressed by your high caliber of problem-solving involved with your projects and presentations, and thoroughly inspired by your enthusiasm for the work you do, as well as your zest and excitement for what will come next.
Be bold in your expectations of yourself, be involved with the life of your community and play an active role in the future of your state. And, just as importantly, form lasting bonds with the people you love, the people you work with, the people you will no doubt influence and help throughout your lives.
On behalf of the entire University, congratulations on your academic career and life at our University. And best wishes for what it is come.
Marc Johnson is president of the University of Nevada, Reno. This message previously appeared in the Nevada Sagebrush student newspaper.