A wide shot of the Andes Mountains with a snow covered Mt. Ausangate in the center. The 2020 team of eleven are hiking in the foreground on a beautiful day.

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Commencement Honors and Meaning
12 Apr
By 2020
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Graduates Celebrate with traditional cap tossThis past week, while getting a little caught up in the excitement of the Los Angeles Tough Mudder and the impending Boston marathon, I was proud to present at the Mansfield, Massachusetts High School. It was an excellent chance to re-focus on our all-important school mission.

This was quickly followed by my receiving an invitation that became the highlight of my week. The Senior Class President for Interlakes High School in Meredith NH reached out to me and noted that during her freshman year I had presented at their school, making a powerful and positive impact on her entire class. This led to a request which had me return last fall, to visit the entire school once again, because their class had suggested to faculty and administrators that the messages of the 2020 Vision Quest program were vital for all of their fellow students to hear. Those experiences, in turn, led the students to invite me to be the Commencement Speaker at their graduation this coming June. I’m overwhelmed in appreciation for the invitation, which I gladly accepted, and for the statement it makes regarding the work that all of the 2020 Vision Quest team makes possible.

Randy speaks at the podium.

Randy speaks to the crowd.

I have had the opportunity to be a commencement speaker at the college, high school and even the corporate level for programs like “Leadership Lakes Region.” But the impact of being asked to officially launch the beginning of a major new chapter in so many young lives is simply astounding to me. It’s a kindness and a responsibility that inspires me to deliver as powerful a message as I possibly can—to honor the inspiration I received from the invitation.

I’ve written previously on my approach to past commencement presentations. Today I just wanted to celebrate the core mission of 2020 Vision Quest—not just for the inspiration it seems clear we’re providing to students and adults throughout New England and beyond—but also for the positive impact such things have on me. Thank you Interlakes High School, and many others, for making me aware of, and inspired for, the vision we’ve built!


One response to “Commencement Honors and Meaning”

  1. Pauline Hughes says:

    Randy, I am sending this Blog to faculty in our RSU #19 school system. I am still working towards getting you here as a speaker at least to our High School although Ideally it would be throughout our schools. It is the one area that I have longed for, peer education, but you offer so much more than just teaching about what being a blind individual is about,, your inspiration is far reaching. Next year is JM’s Senior year and I really want to make this work,, it would be another cherry on top of what I hope will be a banner year for her. thank you for all you are doing..

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