By: Natalie Nygaard
Congratulations seniors! After all the essays, homework, tests, more essays, senior exhibition, some reflection, and general schooling activities, you have finally made it to graduation. Now, while I could try to say some sort of inspirational and not at all cliché thing here about success and the importance of graduation and/or schooling in general, it will inevitably be filled with clichés and be so sweet it will make your teeth rot. So, in order to prevent that horrible fate, I will skip the “trying to restate general graduation quotes” step and instead leave you with this collection of inspirational, cliché graduation quotes…
“It is indeed ironic that we spend our school days yearning to graduate and our remaining days waxing nostalgic about our school days.” -Isabel Waxman
Oh, the ever-so-overdone “the grass really isn’t greener on the other side so appreciate what you have” quote. Graduation is both a start and an end, so don’t make the mistake of forgetting what is ending! When all us seniors walk along to Pomp and Circumstance we’ll all be silently weeping inside and feeling so nostalgic about our time here. Yep. That’s what we’ll be doing. There will be absolutely no celebrations or feelings of general relief here. No sir.
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” -Mark Twain
Next on the list comes the very much overdone “the only limit of your success is your imagination, go forth and take risks” quote. While good advice for convincing your friend to go skydiving with you, I’m not so sure it’s a good idea to base your life choices on this mentality. Having a stable job with a livable paycheck is probably a better idea to be ingraining on our impressionable young minds.
“Do not go where the path may lead; go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
Stay off the beaten path. Choose the road less traveled. Just because everyone else is jumping off the bridge, don’t immediately join them. Don’t let anyone tell you something’s impossible – unless it’s “have you ever tried stapling water to a tree, or slamming a revolving door, or dribbling a football.”
“You are educated. Your certification is in your degree. You may think of it as the ticket to the good life. Let me ask you to think of an alternative. Think of it as your ticket to change the world.” -Tom Brokaw
Because everyone knows a high school diploma means so much these days. Jobs are just falling out of the sky! And every adult that ever was will obviously listen to the ideas of a fresh-out-of-high-school graduate.
“Success isn’t a result of spontaneous combustion. You must set yourself on fire.” -Arnold H. Glasow
To achieve success, you must work for it. And also something about fire.
And now, I would like to present what I believe to be the less cliché, more applicable to our daily lives quotes…
“I’d like to thank the internet, Google, Wikipedia, Microsoft Word, and Copy & Paste…” -Unknown
With all the essays and, of course, senior exhibition, I feel quite confident in believing that all seniors owe at least a small part of their success to the wonder that is modern technology. Wikipedia is a life saver. As is SparkNotes.
“A graduation ceremony is an event where the commencement speaker tells thousands of students dressed in identical caps and gowns that “individuality” is the key to success.” -Robert Orben
Just listen to the speeches tonight. Then laugh quietly at the irony of it all.
“My goal is not to wake up at 40 with the bitter realization that I’ve wasted my life in a job I hate because I was forced to decide on a career in my teens.” –Daria
This quote speaks for itself. That is all.
“Your families are extremely proud of you. You can’t imagine the sense of relief they are experiencing. This would be a most opportune time to ask for money.” -Gary Bolding
Whether your plans for after graduation include college, a job, or just relaxing, money is always good. And what better time to ask for some than the event celebrating all your tremendous accomplishments?
“At commencement you wear your square-shaped mortarboards. My hope is that from time to time you will let your minds be bold, and wear sombreros.” -Paul Freund
Who wants to start the wear-sombreros-to-graduation petition?
“Congratulations! Today is your day.
You’re off to Great Places! You’re off and away!
You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own.
And you know what you know. You are the guy who’ll decide where to go.”
-Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You’ll Go!
Where would this list be without some mention of Dr. Seuss?
I leave you with one final quote, Oceana.
“So long, and thanks for all the fish.” -Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy