These days, our attention is focused on the tightening restrictions to our daily lives, or on the people working the frontlines and putting their lives at risk. In doing so, we have forgotten another life-changing event that is about to happen for teenagers across the country, and around the world: high school graduation.
In this talk, we explore how – even in the midst of great uncertainty and upheaval – you can still be the people you planned to be after graduating – you can still change the world for the better. There are new ways, undiscovered ways, to implement the diplomas you will soon receive. And you don’t have to walk across a stage to get your diploma, or dance it out at prom to feel the culmination of growing up together. There are ways that you can shine that you may not have anticipated, and society itself didn’t see coming – but now is the time to shine brightly and for the benefit of everyone around you.
You as a generation have been through crisis not once but many times. In fact, you are already strong – stronger than you think you are. And this moment is an opportunity to build on that strength that is already a part of you, to add to it a soft and kind-hearted awareness that this is a new kind of togetherness that we now have the opportunity to embrace. History will remember you as heroes or sheroes for your strength and resilience, for cherishing what is most important and making a future possible.