Monday, May 19, 2008

Ball State's 152nd Commencement

by Arthur W. Hafner, Dean of University Libraries

On Saturday, May 3, 2008, Ball State University celebrated its 152nd commencement. Approximately 2,600 students received diplomas at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels.

As Dean of University Libraries, I would like to make some comments and share some observations.

Our graduating students have many people to thank for all of the help they have received along the way — significant others, parents, siblings, grandparents, in-laws, faculty mentors, and employers. And there is another group, too. They are the Ball State alumni who have gone before them since our graduates are the beneficiaries of our alumni’s earlier achievements.

Graduation initiates each of our students into the proud family of alumni who have offered their best. Now, because of what each of our students has accomplished at Ball State, each graduate is positioned to live a better life, to enjoy better opportunities, to hold better jobs, to have better choices, to achieve and build wealth, and to contribute to the communities in which each lives and works. In short, graduation from Ball State allows each of our graduates to claim his/her bliss and joy in the world.

Graduation marks the official completion of an important chapter in each student’s life. In leaving the Ball State campus and Muncie, a part of each student remains.

I urge each graduating student, as a proud new alumnus or alumna, to stay in contact with Ball State, to lend his/her voice and provide financial support for alma mater’s continued growth and development. The University's name recognition, the quality and reputation of its programs, and its success for recruiting and graduating leaders for tomorrow reflects directly upon each graduate and impacts the value of each graduate’s own degree.

As well, I urge each of our graduates to make the effort to stay in touch with fellow students, to develop a strong network of friends and contacts, and to commit one’s self to excellence and focus all creativity and time to make the world a better and more just place, influencing others to do the same.

I hope each graduate of the Class of 2008 will support important community resources, such as libraries that are open and available to everyone for self-education, since these facilities touch and enhance the lives of everyone within their sphere of influence.

As our graduates face tomorrow, my suggestion is that each quickly build on past achievements by setting new goals and seize opportunities that are waiting for you. Everything begins with an idea and happens through action.

I wish each graduating Ball State student abundant good health, happiness, and both financial and personal success.

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