Congratulations to the spring 2011 graduating class! The years (too many for some of you, by the way) of hard work, sacrifice and dedication have paid off. In just a short time, youâ€™ll have a Colorado State University diploma in hand as you head on to the next part of your life. So hereâ€™s the short version: Donâ€™t read this, get busy â€” our world needs your passion, energy, ideas, and engagement now more than ever. And donâ€™t make me regret writing this before finals â€” set two alarms, show up, finish strong.
You can leave CSU knowing that each of you, in your own way, leaves this university a better place than you found it. You gave your energy to student organizations, you worked with faculty on important research, you helped collect sacks full of rice and beans for Cans Around the Oval. Some of you have pushed hard for projects â€” like the new Engineering II Building â€” that youâ€™ll never actually enjoy yourself. Youâ€™ve challenged us to do a better job in key areas, from open communication to campus safety. Others of you have traveled around the world, putting CSUâ€™s service mission into action.
Youâ€™ve made a difference during your time at CSU, and future generations will benefit from your experiences and your example.
In the same way, each of you has benefitted from the work of those previous generations who helped to make your own public university education possible â€” as well as to all those who believed in you, invested in you, and challenged you along the way. Quite simply, none of us succeeds entirely on our own. And so, over time, as you fully begin to appreciate the benefits of your CSU experience, I hope you will stay connected with the campus and help us open doors and make education possible for the students who will come after you.
The term â€œcommencementâ€ signifies that the end of this phase of your education is not truly an end but a beginning â€¦ a foundation upon which youâ€™ll build a life and career. It is also the beginning of your time as a CSU alumnus, and thatâ€™s a status I hope you embrace with the full pride and respect it deserves. We need the energy, spirit, and knowledge that only our alumni can offer. Our alumni are CSUâ€™s most passionate supporters and toughest critics.
Only with the leadership and involvement of our alumni has CSU been able to make real progress over the years.
Gifts from alumni allow us to seek out and hire top faculty from around the country. They enable us to offer more and better scholarships to talented students. They make it possible for us to bring in world leaders as guest lecturers and make investments that dramatically improve the learning environment. None of us succeeds alone. Your university needs you, and we hope youâ€™ll stay connected and involved from the day of your commencement onward.
(Yes, before youâ€™ve even paid your last student bill, Iâ€™m making a pitch to you as alumni. Absolutely shameless.)
All joking aside, we at CSU are proud of you, and we celebrate your achievements. Youâ€™ve done well. Congratulations again to the Class of spring 2011!
Dr. Tony Frank
P.S. Are you still here? Go on â€” get out there! Stuff needs doing!