Many of you will attended the 2016 Graduation Commencement on Saturday June 18, 2016, at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in Maryland to celebrate your academic excellence with family and friends. This is a time for reflection on the hard work and dedication that has translated into academic success. Earning a degree is never an easy process and there are times that each college graduate has questioned their ability to cross the finish line, but you stayed the course, and finished the race. You have earned the title of college graduate.
Just the Beginning
Many view graduation commencement as the end.
Yes, it is the formal end of your degree requirements and time to celebrate; however, taking your newly discovered knowledge out into the world, applying your critical thinking skills to helping solve real issues, and making things better is a responsibility that comes with earning a degree.
Everyone wants to be a college graduate, until it is time to do college graduate stuff!
Get involved in your community. Look for solutions to problems and find your voice to inspire others. Promote personal ownership for making our communities safer to work and live.
Several of my learning partners graduating in the class of 2016 have shared that they will be the first person in their immediate family to earn a college degree. WOW! A new family tradition of academic excellence was established through your hard work and role modeling the scholarly attitude of success.
Never forget where you came from and what you learned along your personal educational journey. Stay humble, and always strive to use your education to be a social justice change agent.
Congratulations “Class of 2016”!
About the Author
Mark Bond has worked in law enforcement and has been a firearms instructor for more than 29 years. His law enforcement experience includes the military, local, state and federal levels as a police officer and criminal investigator. Mark obtained a BS and MS in criminal justice, and M.Ed in educational leadership with Summa Cum Laude honors. As a lifelong learner, he is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in education (EdD) with a concentration in college teaching and learning. Mark is currently an assistant professor of criminal justice at a university and adjunct professor of administration of justice studies at a community college.