Congrats, grad. You made it through four years of hard work, tears of joy, tears of stress and maybe even the freshman 15. But after four years and a completed college degree, your most important life lesson was probably learned in kindergarten, from a childrens’ book. “Oh, the places You’ll Go,” Wildcats, is a classic work by Dr. Suess that gives the best advice you can get for leaving the wondrous world of Durham and starting your life. All this time, you might have thought you hadn’t a clue what you should do with your life after leaving UNH, but almost everything you need to know is contained within the pages of that book. Let us begin.
“You have brains in your head, you have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.” The first piece of advice from another wise cat is essentially that the world is your oyster. Dreams aren’t made from taking the easy path. We at The New Hampshire want to send a message to the class of 2016 to not be afraid of anything. You are a Wildcat; you are fearless and strong. The only way you will fail is if you don’t try.
“Oh, the places you’ll go! There is fun to be done! There are points to be scored. There are games to be won.” Don’t let anyone tell you your days spent in college will be the best of your life. Have you had some amazing, unforgettable times at UNH? Absolutely. Have you met some people that you will probably be close with for the rest of your life? Probably. But you still have more great times to go, and you still have more incredible people to meet. There are wonderful experiences in your future that you can’t possibly foresee right now. Believe that. However, you should also remember that those happy experiences are not the only moments that make life worthwhile.
“I’m sorry to say so but, sadly, it’s true, that bang-ups and hang-ups can happen to you.” Life can be tough, and you know that by now. Not every day is a great one. Sometimes you say the wrong thing, or make the wrong choice. Some mistakes you’ll make in the future will be small, and some will be big. You might lose certain people or miss out on an opportunity, but that doesn’t mean something great isn’t right around the corner. If we didn’t have bad days, the good ones wouldn’t seem so good.
Ultimately, in our farewell letter to you, graduate, the staff of The New Hampshire urges you to always remember where you came from. Remember the homecoming tailgates, the hockey games and dressing up for Halloween with your friends. Remember the long hours spent at the library and the dining halls and the great professors who have taught you more than what can be found in a book. But most of all, remember who you are. No matter what clubs you joined, or sports you played, or dorms you lived in during your four years here, every single one of you will always be a Wildcat at heart. And with that, we’ll leave you with the words of Dr. Suess.
“So…be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O’Shea, You’re off to great places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So…get on your way!”