Sunday, October 13, 2013

A short speech to graduates

On the 10th of October I had the honor to deliver a speech to a group of more than fifty International students at the university of Kaiserslautern, the ocassion was the completion of their graduate studies, among them was Master and Doctorate graduates. After some inspiration search this is what I wrote for them...

Dear graduates, distinguished guests, it is my very honor to stand here today and to congratulate you for completing your graduate studies. You now belong to the 6% of human kind that came this far and that is worth of praise.
The success you celebrate today did not come for free, for we shall never forget the sleepless nights, a place called home we left behind, the fears and struggles that gripped our hearts during these years. But you believed in your cause, you fought back relentlessly and conquered.
You may ask yourselves now, yes we are here, yes we succeeded in our studies, but now what? What lies beyond? What should we do?
I say: look into your hearts and seek once more the inspiration that brought you here, for the heart is never wrong and always knows what it wants, it is then in us to have the courage to follow its voice.
Whatever road you choose to follow will not be an easy one, but it will be yours to walk, and it will be full of wonders, of places and marvelous people. Some people will cross your path once, some may stay longer, but from all, you shall learn, and as you walk, the road will see you become wise and mature, and you shall then understand that the difficulties of the road were there for a reason, and that reason was to make you become who you are.
You started this road some years ago as students, now you are not only graduates, but something bigger. You came here as Mexicans, Indians, Russians and became instead citizens of the world; people with great social conscience that hold the promise for a better world for us all. Here you did not learn only science but also the value of friendship, the warm spirit of the people of this beautiful country and an experience that changed forever who you are.
May our paths cross again I wish, may the fire in your hearts keep burning and take you where you always dreamed, and that you never forget these years, your alma mater and the amazing people you met.

In the words of William Ernest Henley I say to you today:

It matters not how strait the gate, How charged with punishments the scroll, I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.

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