Advice, Diplomas Given to Clarkson Grads Saturday

Advice, Diplomas Given to Clarkson Grads Saturday

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More than 750 degrees were awarded to graduates at Clarkson University Saturday.

That includes bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees.

Commencement was held in the afternoon in the Cheel Campus Center.

Keynote speakers who received honorary degrees included Dorr Begnal '83, co-founder and managing director of Winthrop Square Capital, and Gregory Verdine, the Erving Professor of Chemistry at Harvard University and Harvard Medical School, and president and CEO of FogPharma and LifeMine Therapeutics.

Begnal gave the graduates advice about finding success.

“I try to surround myself with people who when I say I’ve got an idea, they don’t respond with, ‘oh no, now what?’" Begnal said. "Instead, their reaction is, ‘that’s great, let’s hear it!’” He went on to stress the importance of being kind. “In a world where we can be anything we want, I choose to be kind. I know when people are given an equal opportunity to thrive, really great things happen.”

Verdine gave advice he received from his grandfather. 

“The greatest gifts are the ones that you don’t quite yet deserve, the ones that inspire you to live up to them, that spur you to achieve, that orient you toward generosity, that ground you in humility and graciousness,” Verdine said. “Live your life in honor of their gift. Then find someone in need of a gift from you – you’d be surprised how small a gesture of kindness and generosity can transform a life.”

Degrees were given to students from 27 states, 22 countries and 57 counties in New York State. 

(Photo Courtesy:Clarkson University)

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