Chancellor's Friday Letters

Commencement 2010

Commencement 2010

June 18, 2010

Dear Friends,

Commencement last weekend was terrific – a memorable time of celebration, gratitude, accomplishment, pride, introspection and aspiration.

We hosted seven commencement ceremonies, and wished each of our graduating future leaders great success.  I shook the hands of 3,299 graduates in front of the 27,978 family members and friends in attendance.  We had 337 members of the faculty and administration involved.  We averaged 15 bagpipes per ceremony and, counting those who didn’t attend the commencement, we conferred 673 graduate degrees and credentials along with 3,493 undergraduate degrees.

The number of digital photos taken was countless – and priceless.

Here are some of the most notable comments from our commencement speakers – good words for us all to consider, it seems to me.

William Madrigal Sr., of the Mountain Cahuilla Bird Singers Native American Musicians:

“We are the first people of this land. We call ourselves the Cahuilla. That means we are still here. The strong ones. We get our power and we continue that power through these songs and dances. These songs are about the land itself and the creation and everything in it. And they keep us connected to that land and that creation, and they keep us strong.”

Tavis Smiley:

“What kind of life are you going to live, what kind of legacy are you going to leave?”

“Leadership – You can’t lead people if you don’t love people. You can’t save people if you don’t serve people.”

Chris Lam:

“No matter what your ambition is, you need to define it carefully. I call this the Life Positioning System. Just like a compass that guided the boat I was on to Thailand, or the GPS in your car, which will take you to your destination from anywhere, despite the many detours and wrong turns you may take, your Life Positioning System will help you to reach your life goal.”

Judy Sakaki:

“Hope – Remember your ancestors and loved ones, and think about the path they traveled and the hope that filled their hearts so that you may be here today. Hope – Embrace the value, significance and meaning of the degree you are receiving.”

Linda Resnick:

“Life’s not fair. Learn to expect less from life and more from yourself. Accept the changes that life throws at you. Remember your destiny is in your hands – and as your mother told you, keep them clean.”

“Choose Bliss.”

Jack Clarke:

“Don’t forget your home training: basic right and wrong”

“I would encourage you to tend your accomplishments like a master gardener. Through your work, you have tilled the fields of your intellect and stamina, and brought forth fruit that has brought you here today.  Please keep working those fields, because I can almost guarantee even sweeter fruit is ahead.”

Jerome Hunter:

“Know who you are and be who you are. Much of the success in your life will depend on your own accurate assessment and your ability to match it to the task at hand.”

Robert Brown:

“The greatest things you can learn from your family and community are trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship. These six pillars all come together as the gift of character, and form the foundation of ethical decision-making.”

Commencement pictures located at: http://commencement2010.ucr.edu

As this academic year winds down, this is my last Friday Letter until late September.  I trust that you will have pleasant, productive and memorable summer months, and I thank you for your interest, support, advice and great work during the year.

During the summer, the faculty, graduate students and post-docs typically focus on research and scholarship.  Some engage in summer-school teaching. The campus administration will get to work on implementing the campus’ new strategic plan, which sets us on a course to much higher levels of achievement, impact and national recognition.

I hope you choose to continue receiving my Friday Letter, even if you are graduating. Please update your e-mail information at http://ucr4life.ucr.edu/ or input your new e-mail information at https://advancementservices.ucr.edu/EmailPreference/subscribeEmail.aspx .

Best wishes,


Tim White, Chancellor

Living the Promise in South Africa
Greg Kund, one of UCR’s staff research associates in entomology, is attending a soccer training camp in South Africa. The Riverside soccer coach and four of his players were selected for the camp, held in concert with the FIFA World Cup Tournament. Only two coaches and eight players were selected nationwide. That is just one example of the way staff and faculty are intertwined with service to the region.

Fifty Years of Chemical Reactions
UCR’s chemistry department was the first to offer a Ph.D. on campus and also produced an alumnus who went on to win a Nobel Prize. Faculty, staff, students and alumni are celebrating a 50th anniversary of the graduate program with an all-day symposium today and tours of the department tomorrow.

Follow Your Bliss
When Linda Scott Hendrick wanted something more from life, she followed another student to City College of New York and signed up for classes. This campus is better for it. She has worked as a professor at UCR’s Graduate School of Education for 24 years, most recently leading Copernicus, funded through the U.S. Department of Education to the tune of $11.5 million.

Find out what else is going on at UC Riverside: http://www.ucr.edu/happenings/

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