January 21, 2006
As President of Carlow University, I welcome you to our Winter Commencement honoring our Summer and Fall 2005 Graduates.
“To commence” traditionally means “to begin,” but today we use the word “commencement” both to acknowledge achievement and to recognize future opportunities made possible by that achievement. As the academic doors of classroom experience close for our graduates (at least for now), many doors of opportunity open.
Today's ceremony with all its academic “pomp and circumstance” celebrates the intellectual growth, the personal dedication and sacrifice, and the attainment of academic goals of our graduates. Today's ceremony also provides the opportunity for our graduates and the University to acknowledge those who have assisted our graduates in their achievement. All our graduates can point to faculty and staff of Carlow University who, through outstanding teaching and dedicated service, have made a significant difference in their lives as students. All our graduates can acknowledge family and friends who have supported them as students with encouragement and resources. On behalf of the University, I congratulate our graduates. On behalf of our graduates, I thank each of you for your unique contributions to their success.
Author Karen Ravn has written:
Only as high as I reach can I grow, only as far
as I seek can I go, only as deep as I look can I see,
only as much as I dream can I be.
As you, our graduates, complete your academic goals today with the conferral of your hard-won degrees, I encourage you to continue to reach high, to seek far, to look deep and to dream big.
Our speaker today has embraced the content of these challenges and has achieved outstanding success in her response to the opportunities they have presented in her life. I now have the honor to introduce this inspiring woman who is uniquely qualified to share her experiences and insights with you on this special occasion celebrating achievement and opportunity. You will find a summary of Madelyn Ross' accomplishments in your program.
I present to you a woman who has used her nationally recognized journalistic and leadership gifts to rise to the pinnacle of her profession while transforming Pittsburgh's newspaper enterprises along the way.
I present to you a woman who has demonstrated her deep love for her local community through both charitable endeavors and a firm vision of equity.
I present to you a woman who, as a competent and compassionate trailblazer, stands as a shining example of one who embodies the mission and values of Carlow University.
I present to you a woman who has earned the honor and recognition by Carlow University as a “Woman of Spirit.”
Please join me in warmly welcoming our Winter Commencement speaker, Madelyn Ross.