I had been waiting a long time for this weekend – 7 years to be exact. The euphoria I felt for this Morgantown trip was different than the intense glee I feel in the fall.
I wouldn’t be spending my weekend in a gravel tailgating lot or inside Milan Puskar Stadium rooting for my Mountaineers. Instead I would be joining more than 200 other West Virginia University Reed College of Media graduates for commencement at 9 a.m. on Friday the 13th.
Between a demanding job as the director of corporate communications at Akron Children’s Hospital and a busy personal life, I had been working toward my master’s in integrated marketing communications for a while.
While the day started off with gray skies and rain, nothing could dampen the spirit and excitement we all felt in marking our hard-earned achievement by donning our navy cap and gown to walk across the stage to receive our degrees.
Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist and syndicated columnist Connie Schultz gave the keynote. Through humor, emotion and personal stories, she inspired the Reed College of Media graduates with her theme to become an activist for kindness.
Her speech imparted these 3 life lessons:
- As journalists and writers, we should use our power and influence to give those who don’t have a voice a voice.
- Whenever we’re in a position to mistreat others, don’t. “How we treat those we’re allowed to mistreat is the measure of who we are.
- Always tip in cash.
I think we should all heed her advice.