Thank you, Dave [Lissy]. It is so wonderful to see your beautiful faces out in the sunshine. And thanks to all of you for being here today to celebrate this major moment and to celebrate one another.
I am so proud of this learning community and the students in our Class of 2019. What you represent is the very best of IC. You have tremendous fire, inspiring ideas and sharp intellect. And you engage with one another and with this community authentically, by being rooted deeply in your identities. Many of you are representing who you are and your impressive achievements today with cords, stoles and pins.
I’d like to call on a few of those right now:
- Black and gold single cords identify you as a first-generation college student.
- Those of you wearing blue and yellow cords are graduating with academic honors as our summa cum laude, magna cum laude and cum laude students.
- Our students wearing rainbow cords or stoles are showing your pride as part of the LGBTQA community.
- Red, white and blue cords tell us that you have proudly served your country in the armed forces.
- Kente stoles are representing a country of origin and tell us about your roots that stretch around the globe.
- And purple stoles today represent that you’re a member of the inaugural cohort of the BOLD Women’s Leadership Network.
As we look around and see the wide range of cords, stoles and pins, and your beautifully decorated hats, I urge you to remember that these things don’t only connect you to parts of yourself, they connect you to one another. They are visible reminders that celebrating difference is an integral part of celebrating community. We each contribute to our community in different ways.