Geoffrey S. Mearns
Spring 2023 Commencement Remarks
Saturday, May 6, 2023, 10 a.m.
Fine Arts Terrace

'You are stronger and more resilient'

None of us could have predicted just how long we would have to endure the challenges of the pandemic. But what we all know now is that the pandemic did not stop any of you from persisting in the pursuit of earning your Ball State diploma. And now, I can say with confidence that you are stronger and more resilient for having experienced this historic challenge.

'Seek fulfillment'

Today, as you leave our campus to join the ranks of the more than 200,000 living graduates of our University—graduates who, at one time, sat right where you are—I ask you to remember that professional success and career fulfillment are not the same. People generally equate success with financial rewards, with impressive titles, and with notoriety or fame. Those are external indicators of success, and I fear that you may very well find that they are temporary and hollow. Instead, I encourage you to seek fulfillment. Set professional goals that will make you and your families and your friends proud of your professional contributions—because your contributions have improved the lives of other people. That impact is enduring.

'We believe in you'

Through your character and commitment, please help us create a world that is more peaceful and more just. We believe in that brighter future, because we believe in you.