You’ve probably been imagining this for a while now – the day you’ve been dreading, or perhaps patiently waiting for, has almost arrived. Graduation is upon us.
And so you begin to think to yourself, has it really been four (or maybe five) years? Have 1,460 days, 35,063 hours, and 126,227,704 seconds really passed since you first stepped foot onto Drexel’s campus as an eager freshman? As cliché as it sounds, those four years sure did fly by in the blink of an eye.
Long gone are the days of pulling all nighters with your friends in the library until the early hours of the morning. You will sincerely miss having a solid support system of pals who happen to live right across the hall, who are always there for you whenever you need them. And you will definitely miss living with your closest friends in a cozy yet disorderly apartment that you have all come to love.
You are about to leave this place of comfort and security, one that has helped shape you into the person you have become today. This place is one that is familiar and comes almost entirely without any of the responsibilities of adulthood. It has nurtured you to grow and understand your position in a world that is always changing. And it will remain, continuing to provide the same purpose for all those who follow after us, who will be just as disheartened when they have to leave.
Now, people say that it is time to enter the real world and leave college behind. You can’t help but wonder why that sounds so terrifying. Suddenly, you want to spend every last second you have here around the people who you didn’t know you could have spent 18 years of your life without. The funny thing about life, though, is that it never stops. Staying in one place forever doesn’t offer anything of value. You can’t develop or learn from situations that don’t challenge you. Change is good, and often necessary.
Some things won’t really change. The most important friends will stay in your life long after graduation, despite the distance. You’ll be there for them when they need you and vice versa. In the grand scheme of things, the time you’ve spent in college only represents a small fraction of your life – only a fraction of the memories you’ll make, the friendships you’ll create and the accomplishments you will go on to achieve in your lifetime.
Graduation marks the beginning of a journey that leaves the ending up to you. College has equipped you with the map, so pick your destination wisely. Don’t forget to pack an umbrella for those inevitable stormy days, but also remember that the sun shines brightest after the heaviest rains.
The time spent here has prepared us for the real world in one way or another, so now it’s time to move forward. And moving forward is never easy because it comes with taking risks and enduring obstacles while being resilient. But, it’s time to take that next step because your best days are ahead of you.
In the words of the great Dr. Seuss:
“You’re off to great places.
Today is your day.
Your mountain is waiting
So get on your way!”
Congratulations to the Class of 2016! Your fellow Dragons are honored and proud to have known you. We wish you the best in your future endeavors.