'Now Go And Change The World': Advice From NPR Journalists To The Class Of 2013

Jun 10, 2013
Originally published on June 9, 2013 7:33 am

It's that time of year when graduating seniors don their caps and gowns and say so long to memories of the past four (or so) years. Now that those late nights studying for final exams are behind them, some well-rested graduating classes across the country got to hear parting words of wisdom from a few NPR journalists.

You know your favorite voices at NPR have book smarts, but read on to hear their advice about life beyond the mic.

'Blind Old Lady Justice'

"Just remember, as you enter the life of the law, that it is not just the firm or the client or the company waiting for you. Also standing there awaiting your arrival is that blind old lady justice. She expects you to spend some time with HER, too." - Nina Totenberg, NPR Legal Affairs Correspondent, told the Albany Law School and the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law

'You Are Well Prepared'

"We are learning that collaboration is the number one skill for the future. I am here to tell you that you are well prepared to weather the storm and to prosper." - Mara Liasson, National Politics Correspondent said to the University of Maine School of Law

'You Have an Empty Book Before You'

"Forty years ago when I received my diploma, I was clueless. I did not have a clue that some day I'd stand on the Great Wall of China, or dine next to the President, or report from the Capitol, and Tokyo, and Fargo, North Dakota. [...] You guys have in front of you a blank canvas, it's up to you to fill it with the colors you choose and the style you decide on. You have an empty book before you, and you get to write the first page, and decide whether it's going to be a biography or a mystery novel or a calc text book." - Brian Naylor, Washington Desk Correspondent in an address to Stone Ridge School (high school)

'Build a Life That's True and Real'

"What I wish for you is the same as what my parents wished for me. This authenticity I'm talking about is connected to values that they treasured...humility, honesty, community. [...] So cook a meal. Have your neighbors over for dinner. In fact, make that dinner a regular tradition. Plant a garden. Make it a community garden. Sing a song. Play an instrument. Paint. Use that iPad to make your own movie. Build a life that's true and real." - Dan Charles, NPR Food and Agriculture Correspondent said to Goshen College

Here's a round up of the graduation festivities NPR journalists took part in this year:

  • April 28: Dan Charles addressed Goshen College in Goshen, IN
  • May 3: Don Gonyea honored with the WKAR Media Masters Award during commencement activities at Michigan State University
  • May 16: Mara Liasson addressed George Mason University's College of Humanities and Social Sciences
  • May 17: NPR President and CEO Gary E. Knell received an Honorary Degree from Kenyon College
  • May 17: Nina Totenberg addressed the Albany Law School and received an Honorary Degree
  • May 18: Nina Totenberg addressed the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law at Cleveland State University and received an Honorary Degree
  • May 18: Mara Liasson addressed the University of Maine School of Law
  • June 1: Scott Horsley participated in a panel discussion as part of Harvard University's commencement activities and reunion weekend
  • June 6: Brian Naylor addresses Stone Ridge School in Bethesda, MD (high school)
  • June 12: Peter Overby addresses George Mason High School in Falls Church, VA (high school)
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