Academic Ceremonies - December Commencement
Catherine E. Symans, Graduate Class of 2008
President of the Staff Council
Good morning Graduates, Families and Friends!
As President of the Staff Council, I am pleased and honored to address you on behalf of more than 2,000 staff members who work at the University of Vermont. In our various roles, we have been with you throughout your academic journey, and we now join you in celebrating your success on this very special occasion.
During this busy holiday season, we are truly fortunate to have this opportunity to take the time to pause and reflect on your achievements. We know how hard you’ve worked to reach this moment and we applaud your efforts.
This is also a season of giving, and we would like to give you, our graduates, thanks for letting us support you during your academic journey. Whether we’ve helped carry your boxes up to the 4th floor of a residence hall on move-in day or guided you through the challenging process of applying for student financial aid; whether we’ve advised you on potential career opportunities or helped you mail a package to a loved one; whether we’ve helped you purchase textbooks or assisted you with finding a job on campus; or whether we’ve driven the bus, plowed the sidewalks, cleaned the classrooms, responded to an emergency, maintained your academic records, or just sat and listened when you needed to talk….in all these ways, we’ve helped you reach this milestone in your life. And you are the visible proof that we have done our job well.
This past August, President Sullivan announced the establishment of a new Presidential Staff Recognition Awards Program. According to the President, the goal of these awards is to recognize an exceptional group of individuals on the UVM staff who have made extraordinary contributions and who have had a significant impact on our University, as demonstrated through the values expressed in Our Common Ground, the document of aspirations and shared values for the UVM Community. Although there will be a limited number of formal awards given out, seeing each of you receive your degrees this morning is its own true reward.
So I ask you as you continue your life’s journey, take look around you and see all the ways in which you are supported to achieve your goals. Try not to take for granted the support systems in your life but stop every now and then and thank the person who provided you with a service. It will make a big difference.
…so thank you. Thank you for making a difference in the lives of the staff at UVM and allowing us to make a difference in yours.
Last modified January 15 2014 01:49 PM