It is that time of year - a special time - especially for someone who gets to serve at Queens University of Charlotte. I get the privilege of watching hundreds of students celebrate an incredible (and still very rare from a global perspective) feat - graduate from college. Students move in wearing shorts and t-shirts and by mid-day they are all sweaty (except here at Queens where a lot of our upperclassmen help families move in - how sweet is that!) And now…they leave…wearing shorts and t-shirts UNDER a wonderful black robe (it was 90 all week - so the sweaty part was in play). It is hard to think about commencement correctly. It means beginning yet it feels so much like an end. The natural posture is one of reflection. Partly because there are so many wonderful memories when looking backward - and partly because looking forward can be pretty scary. Class of 2012 - you just experienced one of the finest undergraduate educational experiences in the country. Yep. I am biased. But I believe it. You had faculty, staff, friends and family invest in you for four years - and I would put your growth and development as young men and women up against any college or university in the country. You are different today. Period. We have worked hard to make an impact in your life - and you in turn have left your mark on our University. So - let’s take a peak forward. What is commencing? Your future. You could look at it in all of its ambiguous glory and tremble or you can reflect on how you have been equipped, take a quick inventory of your gifts and talents, and quickly realize that you are ready - and dare I say - expected - to pour yourself out into this great world. Remember that over the last four years you have learned a lot. You have learned how to ask questions and you have learned how to listen. We need you to do a lot of both of those as you move on from Queens. Listening is a lost art form in the world of communication. We are so focused on message transmission and mediums that we often miss the content of the message. Listen well, Royals because it is pretty rare. Keep asking the big questions - we need them to be answered. Asking hard questions is not for the faint of heart - so keep at it - the world needs it (no pressure) Proud of you all.