Oklahoma Secretary of Commerce Larry V. Parman gave graduates a how-to list for life beyond college as part of his keynote address at OSU Institute of Technology’s 199th commencement ceremony Friday afternoon.
Parman laid out his 13 steps to realizing your dreams to the nearly 230 students sitting in caps and gowns in front of the stage in Covelle Hall.
“Don’t think in terms of successes or failures,” Parman said. “Think about outcomes. Learn from experience and make adjustments to achieve the outcome you desire.”
Many in this class did achieve successful academic outcomes with 60 percent, nearly 140 students, graduating with honors having a 3.0 GPA or higher.
“OSUIT is setting a standard for higher education in the state and the nation. You have the opportunity to make us and your school proud,” he said.
Parman also advised the graduating class to work to their strengths, cultivate good habits, be a perpetual student, try to have focus, and find balance between their work and personal lives.
Go into the future like it’s a white board; don’t take your past with you,” he said. “Build on the past that’s been a positive experience for you. Learn from and move past the negatives that have happened to you.”
Parman praised the commitment of students and the focus of faculty and administrators in making OSU Institute of Technology a leader in workforce development.
“OSUIT has prepared you. You are ready, but not finished,” he said. “Always keep learning.”
The student respondent was Adrienne Kayla Michelle Luster, who graduated with an Associate in Applied Science in Information Technologies.
Luster said all the graduates deserve congratulations after all the late-night cram sessions, frustrations with professors, midterms, finals and everything in between.
“We have also had blessings such as passing tests we didn’t think we would and making friends that have helped us through the hard times,” she said.
Through the good and even the bad, Luster said this accomplishment of walking across the graduation stage is worth savoring.
“To some, this is the last thing you will do here before you get to join the workforce. For others, this is just a stepping stone to our next degree,” she said. “Cherish today and this time; you have worked so hard for what you have earned.”