Commencement speeches are this weird kind of product. You’re about to go outside the bubble and I’m going to give you the last bit of magic, and the magic falls flat often. But sometimes it sticks. So if your school didn’t have a good one, you can find a lot of them online.
For instance, Steve Jobs’ commencement speech is remarkable for its force and humility and humanity.
I’ve just found Will Ferrell’s speech at Harvard, which is just so funny. It’s just so flat out funny. It’s making fun of everything, so it’s provocative in a human way.
I looked recently at Sheryl Sandberg’s speech, the COO of Facebook. If you’re a woman facing your full career how do you see your future as a leader? What kind of things do you not want to compromise on ever?
So really for those who are looking for how to be inspired in life I think commencement speeches are a great vitamin to consume. People say watch Ted Talks. I say watch commencement speeches because I think they’re much more immediate in many ways.
In Their Own Words is recorded in Big Think’s studio.
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