Professor Dustin Rutledge, English

WHAT I KNOW

Think, but don’t – necessarily – think all the time before you act; just give.  Give your time.  Give your attention.  Give your best: your example and your exclamations.  Give, wherever you can, without a thought.

Then give more.

Astonishing things will happen.  (You may not always see or learn of all of them, but you’ll feel the momentum.)

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Georgie Asfoura

ADVICE I GOT FROM SOMEONE I LOOK UP TO

Dear Friends,

When you find something you are passionate about, something you truly believe in, chase after that dream with all your resources & heartfelt conviction.  There will be people along the way who tell you ‘no’ or ‘you can’t…that’s stupid,’ but don’t listen to them.  Always believe in yourself, and believe that you can change the world.

Push yourself to greatness. Don’t except mediocrity.  Strive to be THE BEST. Reach farther & go beyond.  You want to be a teacher?  You can do better: start your own school & make your own curriculum.  You want to be a lawyer? You can do better: make new laws.  You want to be a doctor & treat patients? You can do better: cure cancer.

Never settle. Always believe in your dream.

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Jean M. Chisser, Alumni Special Services

Enjoy this time right after graduation – most likely this will be the time in your life when you are most free to explore and try new things. Remember, too, that making a decision now doesn’t mean that it is a lifetime decision; you can always make another decision later.

Ever thought you’d like to live in a different part of the country? Try it! You can always move back to your home state.

Ever thought you’d like to backpack through Europe, maybe staying in hostels and riding the trains overnight to get to a new country? Try it! You will meet fascinating and interesting people from all over the world. (Your parents may say they’d rather you didn’t do this, but actually, deep inside, they would most likely be happy for you.)

Want to commit to a year or two of service in the JVC or other volunteer-based organization? Now’s the time. You (most likely) don’t have a spouse or children to care for, so you are free to try this.

Tired of living with several other people? Get your own apartment and live alone to see if you like it.

Basically, try new things and don’t be afraid of failure. Trying something and deciding you don’t like it is not failure.

Live up to your own expectations for yourself, not anyone else’s. Pursue your own dreams, not anyone else’s. Work to identify what makes you truly happy and you will be content.

And finally, stay connected to Boston College. You are always an Eagle!

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Ashley Duggan, Communication Department

BRIEF ADVICE FOR SENIORS

TAKE RISKS.  Many of life’s greatest joys are discovered when we stray from the path we already know, from the path that is safe, from the path where we can expect what is coming next.  Take risks to find new places, people, and circumstances.  Take risks to discover vocation.  Take risks in love and friendship.  Take risks to discover your heart’s desires.  The joys in learning, in loving, and in living, and worth many risks.

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From a Capstone Professor

The Asian Student Scholarship was recently named in memory of President Corazon (Cory) Aquino and her husband, Benigno Aquino of the Philippines. After successfully leading a peaceful revolution against the dictator, Ferdinand Marcos she was elected President. Shortly thereafter she came to Boston College and speaking to an audience that filled St. Ignatius Church, she said: “when people ask me how I lead my life I say simply, ‘hope for the best, prepare for the worst, and leave the rest up to God.’” I’ve always considered this to be good advice—for presidents and seniors who ask the same question.

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Jonah Berman, CSOM

The years right after graduation are incredibly exciting and yet fraught with fear and anxiety as well. I think a few ideas, pieces of advice, and viewpoints have helped me get to where I am, and I’ll share them here.

First, look at the world through an optimistic lens. Treat everyone you encounter as a potential friend, employer, neighbor, teammate – not as an annoyance or potential rival. The relationships you make will define you, and you never know who you might run into later on and what that relationship might become.

Luck is truly when preparation meets opportunity. You must be prepared to seize the moment, at any time.

Always have plans, but always be prepared for the unexpected. Life will inevitably throw you some curveballs, and it’s all about whether you can adjust your swing.

Treasure your friends and family, and be grateful for every moment you have with them.

You work to live, you don’t live to work. Love your work, but don’t let it define you. You will never regret having sacrificed a little work to have more time with loved ones. But you may well regret spending an extra hour in the office if it means missing a significant life event for someone you care about.

Take advantage of your newfound freedom. The responsibilities increase with every passing year. If there’s something you’ve dreamed of doing and you have the time and resources to do it, do it now.

Work before you go to graduate school. Give yourself some time to figure out who you are and what it is you really want to do.

Have 3, or 4, or 5 careers. There’s too much out there in the world to devote yourself to one job forever.

Finally, trust your heart. It’s right more often than you think.

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Professor Kaplan-Maxfield, English

Eat quenelles with truffle sauce–in Lyon, if possible.
Practice all the ways of love.
Now that you know how to be drunk on wine, learn to be drunk on everything else, as Baudelaire instructs us.
Trust your soul; it knows what it wants especially when we don’t.
Read poetry from time to time; otherwise you’ll get hardening of the arteries.
Mistrust authority and break as many rules as possible, including these; make your own mistakes, and understand that life is made up by each of us. Take as little as possible ready made.
Don’t own too much, in any sense of the word.
Possess a second language.
Be possessed.

I only have advice that’s anti-advice. I hope–since Emerson said “It’s not education but provocation that I can receive from my teachers.” Or something like that.

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