Saturday, May 4, 2013
Members of the Board of Trustees, President Haynes, faculty, staff, families, friends, and my fellow graduates; it is an honor to stand in front of you today as we celebrate the accomplishments of the Northern Michigan University class of 2013!
We did it; no more tests, no more papers, no more winter…hopefully!
Way up here in Marquette many of us have spent the past four or five years far away from our families and everything we knew for most of our lives. We often got the question- you live where? The Upper What? Why would you want to go so far away? Isn’t it freezing up there? Well we all know the answer is, yes, it is far away and yes, it is freezing for most of the year.
So why year after year did we make that long drive from below the bridge, or up from Chicago or all the way across from the Dakotas? We did it because we know there’s something very special about being a Wildcat. There is a beauty to NMU, a magic if you will that cannot fully be explained, but it is something that so many of my fellow graduates, myself included, have felt over our time here at Northern. We did it because there is nothing quite as calming as a walk on the shores of Lake Superior or through the woods that surround campus. We did it because there are not many other places where you can be snowboarding fifteen minutes after class. We did it because there is no energy quite like the one that exists when spring finally comes and everyone is playing outside with their Frisbees and guitars. Simply enough we did it because we love the people, the professors, the environment, and everything that makes NMU what it is.
We, as Northern students, have a passion for not only the campus community but the Marquette community as a whole. Our passion is evident in the countless community services hours we have put in, it shows when we spend our money at local business, when we get our produce at the farmers market, on all the bumper stickers, t-shirts, and hats that are adorned with symbols representing Marquette and the UP. This passion for both our school and our local community has created the eclectic and wonderful opportunities we all have had over our time here.
We are all here today celebrating our success as graduates because we followed our passion to be here at Northern, our passion for education; our passion for excellence. As we take our next step in life we must remember how important it is to carry both a passion for what we do and a love for the community we live in. The success we have had academically, athletically, and beyond speak for themselves as proof that doing what you love and being a true citizen of your community is a winning combination.
Congratulations class of 2013, lets go out there and show the world why its always a great day to be a Wildcat!