Well, today is the day. On this day, we will all be taking one last stride as students across the graduation stage. Today, we take our final bows with the friends, the family, that we have come to know and love these past four (or more) years. It is a day of celebration. A day of great joy and triumph, and for many of us, it may be a day of sadness, as well. With our graduation comes a whole new world, the world that is adult life. This is indeed a big step to take.

A huge transition in fact, and it comes with a great deal of uncertainty. I know for myself, the next few steps of my journey are not really set in stone. There will be some time where I won’t have a defined direction or a specific path to follow. I have clear goals for further down the line, but nothing currently fills the tabula rasa that is the next five months. I will go wherever the wind takes me. The constant has always been school, and now...it too will be finished.

Whatever you may be feeling on this day, know that every emotion is perfectly appropriate. And above all, remember this one thing: you made it.

From your very first step on to campus, you made it.

From the day you got your acceptance letter, you made it.

From the moment you picked up your JAC Card and moved into your dorm room, you made it.

From FrOG week to your first day of classes, to your first all-nighter, your first test and your first Friday night out with friends, you made it.

From year one to this moment right now, you have made it.

Through all the laughs, the tears, the late nights, the coffee cups, the pain, the questions, the searching, the partying, the discovering, and the rising above the odds, you have made it.

From all the football games, school-spirited events, MaddiPalooza’s, TDU open mic’s, Funny Freakin’ Fridays, Forbes Center shows, SMADFest’s, pop-up classes and all other events in between, you have made it.

After four years, all of your time and energy has paid off. You are getting your diploma. You are achieving one dream, and moving on to the next. You are graduating. You have made it.

Enjoy this day, Dukes. May your graduation day be filled with love and happiness, and here’s to the bright future that lies ahead of all of us. And never, ever forget…

You. Have. Made. It.

Congratulations, and Go Dukes!!!

A little musical inspiration for you:)