On behalf of the Board of Trustees of Bucknell University, it is my pleasure to welcome you to our 162nd Commencement.
And I want to extend a special welcome to our Commencement speaker, Ms. Quindlen.
My greetings are addressed to each constituency celebrating here today.
First, to the faculty, administration and staff — thank you.
Thank you for taking the inquisitive minds that arrived on this campus, many in the fall of 2008, and helping to mold them into those of young scholars. Bucknell's mission statement includes the objective to "educate men and women for a lifetime of critical thinking." You have accomplished this goal while they have been here.
Thank you also for the countless hours that you spent with these graduates responding to their questions, listening to their trepidations and inspiring their dreams.
Finally, thank you for nurturing the growth of a group of teenagers into a class of young women and men who have developed a strong affiliation with this University.
To the parents, family and friends of the graduates — revel.
Revel in this ceremony and the culmination of your efforts over the past 20-plus years to guide the development and growth of these young adults.
As a parent of one of today's graduates, I share the excitement, the pride and, yes, nostaglia that you are feeling, knowing that this stage of their lives has come to a conclusion.
Revel also in the knowledge that these graduates are prepared for the complex world that awaits them. They have matured and grown significantly while at Bucknell. Although they will always be only a text message away, they are ready to be on their own.
And to the graduates of the Class of 2012 — aspire.
Aspire to take your Bucknell education into the wider world to make a difference in whatever vocation or avocation you choose.
Since I was accepted to Bucknell off the wait list, I was especially grateful to attend this University. And I would often come to this very spot above Freas Hall, look out into the rolling hills and promise to "do good" with my education. I encourage each of you to reflect on how you will fully capitalize on the degree that you are about to receive to "do good."
Aspire also to maintain the many friendships that you have developed here and to keep these connections strong over the years ahead. Your Bucknell relationships will always be a great source of comfort and support.
Finally, aspire to use your time, talents and treasures to give back— to give back to this University and to your wider communities. You are among the most fortunate and you will play a critical role in helping others.
On behalf of the entire Board of Trustees, I extend congratulations for all of your successes and your best wishes as you go forth. Congratulations.
It is now my pleasure to introduce the 17th president of Bucknell University, Dr. John Bravman.