Originally published as an article column in the Chicago Tribune, Mary Schmich on June 1, 1997 imagined what she would say if ever invited to speak at a graduation ceremony:
“Inside every adult lurks a graduation speaker dying to get out, some world-weary pundit eager to pontificate on life to young people who’d rather be Rollerblading. Most of us, alas, will never be invited to sow our words of wisdom among an audience of caps and gowns, but there’s no reason we can’t entertain ourselves by composing a Guide to Life for Graduates.
I encourage anyone over 26 to try this and thank you for indulging my attempt. Ladies and gentlemen of the class of ’97:”
Shortly after the original article was published, Artist Baz Luhrmann put it to music. Not just your typical song though, actually he recited Mary’s original words as a speech, not as a song. Since 1997, these words have become responsible for some of the most inspirational graduation ceremonies across the nation.
The statements made are timeless and eventless. Advice that on any given day can inspire anyone who listens and at times has personally brought tears to my own eyes.
I am happy to be able to share the video with all of you and hope that it will be passed on and enjoyed.
Kelly L. Derricks