2019 Commencement

2019 Commencement


(solemn instrumental music) – [Announcer] Leading the
platform party are Dr. Seth Meehan and the Reverend James F.
Keenan of the Society of Jesus, chief marshalls of the platform, and Kevin McLaughlin, president of the Boston
College Alumni Association. (solemn instrumental music) Now processing are the
deans of the schools and colleges of the university. (solemn instrumental music) Entering next are the vice presidents and senior administrators
of Boston College. (solemn instrumental music) Approaching the platform now
are the members of the Board of Trustees and Trustee
Associates of the University. (solemn instrumental music) (martial music) (solemn instrumental music) Processing next are our 2019
honorary degree candidates: Dan Bunch, escorted by
Father Anthony Penna, Associate Vice President for University Mission and Ministry; (solemn instrumental music) Reverend Robert D. Farrell
of the Society of Jesus, escorted by Reverend Casey
C. Beaumier of the Society of Jesus, Vice President
and University Secretary; (solemn instrumental music) (martial music) (solemn instrumental music)
(people murmuring) Marilynne Summers Robinson,
escorted by Mary T. Crane, Thomas F. Rattigan professor, director of the Institute
for the Liberal Arts; (audience applauding) (solemn instrumental music) Thomas D. O’Malley,
escorted by James J. Husson, Senior Vice President for
University Advancement. (solemn instrumental music) Processing now are his Eminence
Cardinal Seán O’Malley, Archbishop of Boston, and
the Reverend Robert L. Keane of the Society of Jesus,
rector of the Jesuit Community. (solemn instrumental music) And now our commencement speaker, Isabel Maria de Oliveira Capeloa Gil, rector of the Catholic
University of Portugal, (audience applauding) escorted by Peter K. Markell, chair of the Boston
College Board of Trustees, and the Reverend William P.
Leahy of the Society of Jesus, President of Boston College. (solemn instrumental music) (audience applauding) (solemn instrumental music) – Ladies and gentlemen, please
stand for our National Anthem and remain standing for the invocation. The University Chorale, under
the direction of John Finney, will sing the National Anthem. ♪ O say can you see ♪ ♪ By the dawn’s early light ♪ ♪ What so proudly we hailed ♪ ♪ At the twilight’s last gleaming ♪ ♪ Whose broad stripes and bright stars ♪ ♪ Through the perilous fight ♪ ♪ O’er the ramparts we watched ♪ ♪ Were so gallantly streaming? ♪ ♪ And the rocket’s red glare ♪ ♪ The bombs bursting in air ♪ ♪ Gave proof through the night ♪ ♪ That our flag was still there ♪ ♪ O say does that
star-spangled banner yet wave ♪ ♪ O’er the land of the free ♪ ♪ And the home of the brave? ♪ (audience applauding) – Oliver Rafferty, of
the Society of Jesus, will offer the invocation. – In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. God our father, Lord of all creation, we praise and thank you for
all that you have given to us. We thank you for having
brought us, through the work of four years, to the
happiness of this day. Fill our hearts with gratitude for all who have helped us this
far on our journey of life: our families, our friends, our teacher. We pray for all who’ve
been generous to us. We ask you to give us hearts
filled with kindness and love so that we may be
generous to those in need. Give us the ability and the
grace to put our talents and our lives at the service of others. We call to mind those who
did not live to see this day and who now sleep in Your peace. Grandparents, parents,
siblings and friends, may our lives show forth
something of their goodness. In the words of Saint Francis of Assisi, make us instruments of Your peace. Where there is hatred may we bring love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy. God of all things, we ask
you to bless Boston College, all who work here, all who study here. As we take our leave of Boston College, we dedicate ourselves to the
continued pursuit of wisdom and to the honor of Your name. We make this prayer through our
Lord Jesus Christ, Your son, Who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit. One God forever and ever. – [All The Rest] Amen. (Oliver speaks in foreign language) – I thought a few words of
Irish would not go amiss in this assembly. (audience laughing) (audience applauding) – Please be seated. William P. Leahy, of the Society of Jesus, President of Boston College, will now offer his welcoming remarks. – Mr. Markell and members
of the Board of Trustees, your Eminence Cardinal
O’Malley, honored guests, particularly Isabel Capeloa
Gil, our speaker today, and our other distinguished
honorary degree recipients, members of the Golden
Jubilee Class of 1969, and the Silver Jubilee Class of 1994, members of the Boston
College Faculty and Staff, alumni, parents, guests and friends, and especially the 2019
graduates of Boston College, (audience applauding) on behalf of the entire
university community, I welcome all here this
morning in Alumni Stadium and those participating via webcast to the 143rd Commencement
of Boston College. This commencement… This ceremony marks an end and a beginning for our graduates. One phase of their lives is complete and new possibilities and
opportunities await them. Today is about gratitude,
memories, and the future. We are especially
grateful for our graduates and for what they accomplished as students during their years at the Heights. They brought new life to Boston
College with their talents, energy, commitment, and generosity. Today reminds us how much
our graduates received from their parents,
spouses, family and friends, people whose steadfast support and encouragement had
such decisive impact. To express our gratitude,
may I ask that family and friends of our graduates
stand to allow the Class of 2019, faculty, staff and
others here this morning, stand to present our thanks
with a round of applause. If you would please
stand, parents, family. (audience applauding) We also acknowledge with
great gratitude Boston College faculty and staff for their roles in helping those graduating today develop their intellectual
gifts and personal talents, growing self-knowledge
and commit themselves to living lives of purpose and meaning. Finally, we are thankful for
the Boston College alumni and friends, whose generous
gifts of time, advice and financial resources made it possible for many to graduate today. Gratitude is a key part of the
ceremony and so our memories. Members of the Class of 2019, and all receiving degrees
today, take with them memories that will be part of their lives forever, memories of friendships begun
and nourished over the years that taught powerful lessons about self, the goodness of others,
and the presence of God, experiences on a service
trip or study abroad, that expanded understanding
and appreciation of different cultures and perspectives, moments when a faculty
member, administrator or staff member had a
transformative impact on intellectual development
or personal growth. Besides gratitude and memories, this commencement invites
consideration of the future both as individuals and as
members of various communities. We live in a world that
desperately needs people of intelligence, faith and commitment to work for the good of society. Too many around the
world live amid violence, war, poverty and illiteracy. Religious faith is threatened
by intolerance and apathy in too many places. Racial, social and economic
inequality continue to cry out for justice and threaten
peace and stability. Governments at the state
and national level struggle to overcome partisanship and address urgent matters
concerning immigration, the environment, education and housing. We clearly face daunting problems, but that has been true in every age. You Boston College graduates of 2019 have great talent and promise. I am confident that you have
the ability, preparation and commitment to engage and
help resolve pressing issues of our time, because of who you are and what you have
experienced in our community. You have benefited from a
Boston College education emphasizing the liberal arts and provided in an atmosphere of care and faith, shaped by the Jesuit Catholic intellectual
and religious heritage. I urge you: give to
others from the abundance that you have received, and to put into practice the
principles, values and beliefs that have long shaped Boston College and challenged its alumni. May such phrases, as men
and women for others, go set the world on
fire and ever to excel, animate and inspire you
as you live and work and serve as leaders in the 21st century. May you always strive
to be beacons of light and hope for those around you. And may God continue to bless
you and all your families. Thank you. (audience applauding) – I will now read the Latin
version of the degree. (speaking in foreign language) The candidates for the honorary degrees will now be presented to the
President of the University. Dan Bunch. (audience applauding) For more than 35 years,
Dan Bunch made certain that Boston College students
who faced obstacles on the path to graduation had the support
they needed to succeed. A native of Hayneville,
Alabama, he first came to Boston College as a student
in the Black Talent Program, earning both his bachelor’s
and master’s degrees at the Heights. In 1982, he began working
at Learning to Learn, which teaches Boston College
students the learning skills and problem-solving
techniques necessary to thrive in the classroom and in life. During his 30 years as program director, Learning to Learn earned honors from the United States
Department of Education and was replicated at
more than 100 colleges across the country. Later, as special assistant
to the vice president for student affairs, he worked effectively to foster a deeper sense
of community on campus among students, faculty, and staff. A true University citizen, he served on the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Scholarship Committee,
the Black Faculty, Staff, and Administrators Association, and the AHANA Alumni Council. He received the 2015 Boston
College Community Service Award for his volunteer efforts with the Massachusetts
Avenue Baptist Church, and the Concerned Black
Men of Massachusetts, a nonprofit mentoring
organization he co-founded. The AHANA Alumni Group presented him with the inaugural Keith A.
Francis Inspiration Award in 2016. In recognition of his role
as a mentor, advocate, and friend to generations
of Boston College students, Boston College confers
on Dan Bunch the degree of Doctor of Social
Sciences, honoris causa. (audience applauding) Robert Donald Farrell,
of the Society of Jesus. Influenced in college by a
talk given by a Jesuit priest, Reverend Robert D. Farrell,
of the Society of Jesus, entered the New England Province of the Society of Jesus in 1951. After earning his bachelor’s
and master’s degrees from Boston College, he was assigned to teach at Baghdad
College in Iraq in 1958. While there, he grew in his
appreciation of the intersection between Christianity and
Islam, the faiths represented by the school’s student body. After returning to
America, he taught English to young Jesuits at Shadowbrook
and high school students at Cranwell School in
Lenox, Massachusetts, and directed the English Department at Cheverus High School in
Portland, Maine, for 15 years. He joined the faculty of
his alma mater in 1990 to teach writing in the
College of Advancing Studies, now known as the Woods College. Ever attentive to his students, he preferred to correct
papers in plain pencil, which he viewed as a gentler
form of criticism than red ink. After a distinguished 28-year
career at Boston College, he retired from teaching in 2018. His caring, inspired teaching
led students, alumni, and friends to establish the
Reverend Robert D. Farrell of the Society of Jesus
Scholarship Fund in 2003 to support local,
part-time students enrolled in the Woods College. For a lifetime of service and ministry that introduced thousands
of students to literature and the art of quality writing, Boston College awards
Reverend Robert D. Farrell, of the Society of Jesus, the degree of Doctor of Humane
Letters, honoris causa. (audience applauding) Marilynne Summers Robinson. For her grace and intelligence in writing, American novelist and essayist
Marilynne Summers Robinson was awarded a National Humanities Medal by President Barack Obama in 2012. It is one of the many honors bestowed upon this celebrated author, whose novels include “Housekeeping,” a 1982 Pulitzer Prize finalist; “Lila,” a finalist for
the National Book Award; and “Home,” also a National
Book Award finalist and winner of the Women’s
Prize for Fiction. Her novel “Gilead,” part
of an acclaimed trilogy set in a fictional Iowa town,
won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National
Book Critics Circle Award. Her prose also garnered her
the Library of Congress Prize for American Fiction in 2016. The same year, Time magazine
named her to its list of 100 most influential people,
and in 2018 described her as one of the foremost
figures in American letters. Her essay collections demonstrate
wide intellectual range, addressing such subjects
as the relationship between religion and
science, nuclear pollution, 16th-century theologian John Calvin, and contemporary American politics. In addition to captivating
audiences and critics, she shared her talents
with aspiring writers. Now professor emerita at the
University of Iowa, she taught in its writer’s workshop
for two-and-a-half decades. For her creativity,
inspiration, and commitment to literature and the humanities,
Boston College confers upon Marilynne Summers Robinson the degree of Doctor of Humane
Letters, honoris causa. (audience applauding) Thomas D. O’Malley. Thomas D. O’Malley grew up in
a working-class neighborhood in New York’s Staten Island, and rose to become a successful
Wall Street executive and one of the nation’s most
accomplished entrepreneurs. He paid his Manhattan College
tuition by driving a taxi and a school bus, and working
in the school’s cafeteria. In gratitude for his education,
he served his alma mater as a trustee for 15 years,
and as board chair for seven, and he and his wife Mary
Alice are recognized as the most generous donors in the Catholic college’s history. He began his professional
career in commodity trading in New York City in 1964, and
went on to become vice chair of the investment banking
firm Salomon Brothers. He then spent 32 years
as a senior executive in the independent energy
sector, before retiring in 2016. The parent of three
Boston College graduates, he was a Boston College trustee and trustee associate for 14 years. In 2015, the family’s
foundation established the O’Malley Family Athletics
Endowed Scholarship Fund to support Boston
College student-athletes. The O’Malleys’ philanthropy extended to their local community
in Connecticut as well, including support for Greenwich Hospital, and scholarships at Trinity College… Trinity Catholic High School
in Stamford for the children of police officers,
firefighters and nurses. For his business leadership and commitment to Catholic education and
community organizations, Boston College awards Thomas
D. O’Malley the degree of Doctor of Business
Administration, honoris causa. (audience applauding) Isabel Maria de Oliveira Capeloa Gil. Isabel Capeloa Gil made history
last year as the first woman to be elected president of
the International Federation of Catholic Universities, the
world’s leading organization of Catholic higher education institutions. (audience cheering) Upon her election, she pledged, “To make the power of the few
the strength of the many.” As the International Federation of Catholic Universities
president, she champions efforts to promote research and academic exchanges among the member schools,
enhancing the image and impact of Catholic higher
education around the world. Her career has been
marked by the conviction that global engagement in
higher education is critical to create a more just society. She has held numerous
visiting professorships and fellowships, including in China, where she spent her childhood, as well as Germany, Brazil,
Italy, and the United States. Rector and professor of
cultural studies in the School of Human Sciences at the
Catholic University of Portugal, she studies issues concerning
diversity and conflict, and her research, published
in the five languages she speaks fluently,
explores the boundaries between literature, the
arts, and other disciplines. Last fall, she joined
an international group of Catholic education leaders
invited by the Vatican to launch the Strategic Alliance of Catholic Research Universities, of which Boston College is a member. For her service to research, teaching, and the Catholic intellectual culture, Boston College awards Isabel
Capeloa Gil the degree of Doctor of Humane
Letters, honoris causa. (audience applauding) Isabel Maria de Oliveira Capeloa Gil, rector of the Catholic
University of Portugal, will now address the graduates
of the Class of 2019. (audience applauding) – Your Eminence Cardinal
O’Malley, Father Leahy, Chair Peter Markell, Board
of Trustees, fellow honorees, deans, members of the
Faculty, proud families, dear Alumni, friends of Boston College, and the most important people
in this Alumni Stadium, dear Boston College graduates, Class of 2019, congratulations! (audience applauding) As I look across this magnificent stadium and hear the energy of your youth, I feel the pride of your families, the sense of accomplishment
of your Alma Mater, and I rejoice with you over
your tremendous achievements. Well done. I’m deeply honored to have the privilege to be the speaker of these
2019 Commencement exercises. It is no small honor to
receive an honorary doctorate from Boston College, a
leading research institution, a transformational voice
in global higher education, one that excels by the
example of its Eagles. I would like to thank Father
Leahy and the Board of Trustees for conferring upon me a distinction that is as undeserving
as it was unexpected, and say I pledge to honor the association with an inspirational
institution leading in service to the Church and to society at large and truly embodying the spirit of an education with a heart and a soul. To speak to you, the embodied future, about what lies ahead is preposterous, in the sense that it is both outrageous, foresight is very likely to fail, and quite literally outmoded,
because the speaker will seek to unravel the future with
the inevitably outdated tools of the present. I could say the future
has never been brighter, or I could say the future
has never been more alarming, and array sound arguments for either. What I would not say, unfortunately,
is that I cannot offer to pay your student loans. (audience laughing) But we strongly encourage
those who can to do so. (audience laughing) (audience applauding) Your times are no more glorious or hazardous than those
of your predecessors. What has changed is not the nature but certainly the intensity, the scale of the challenges
ahead, colossal in size and inevitably global in
scope, amongst them, naturally, the impact of climate change
or the future of work, and the urgency to find robust solutions. This is a time to work
together, not to build walls but for shared engagement in respect for our common humanity. (audience applauding) But perhaps more importantly,
the story we tell about who we are, as human, social and political beings is also changing. And not always for the better. Stories make us human. They convey our dreams and aspirations, they communicate our view of the world and articulate ways of living together. And, for this, we need to
find the right language, responsible, civil and truthful. In short, we are the stories we tell. These stories are as poignant
as the harrowing situations they address, as brilliantly
playful as the happiness of simple life, as
complex as human nature, as tremendously diverse as
the people who voice them. They represent the shared
values communities live by. They reflect the
entanglements of human life, the aspirations and the shortcomings, the burdens of past history, the pride of scientific achievement, the disorderly brilliance
of artistic creation. The stories we go by
elevate us out of the abyss and substantiate the stories
we tell about ourselves, our values, politics,
culture and religion, defining how we position
ourselves in the world. For truly, humans are
not the simple result of haphazard DNA coding. The dangerous mantra of
perfection, perfect bodies, perfect lives, perfect
technological advancement, spotless societies, results,
and we know it sadly well, in authoritarianism, repression, abuse. What makes us human are
extraordinary imperfections, and the will to improve upon them, in the management of our
lives, in our understanding of others, in the respect
for the environment, and in our contribution to society. The stories we go by
enable a sense of purpose and instill meaning in
our quirky singularities, helping us understand how one came to hold whatever opinion one does hold. They are certainly not immune
to criticism and doubt, radical even at times. For the stories are never fully told, they live on in our practice
and it is up to us to improve, transform and revise them. In fact, to live full
lives, we will never be done with questioning, with
undoing and redoing. Transformation is not
a target but a process, and one that you’ll never be done with. You have been partners
in BC’s exceptional model of instruction and a lot
is expected of you now. Remember that “Every one
to whom much is given, “of her much will be required.” Be generous in your giving,
and be wise in the choices you make, they are the turning points of life’s exciting page-turner. Chance and choice modeled
by the shared structures of feelings and translated
into the stories you live by will give shape to your story and sustain or revise your beliefs. No one stands alone in the
world of super connections, and your story shall
be affected, impacted, by those of the people around you. Others will confront you with
the most challenging dimension of human growth: the
experience of difference. And this comes in all shapes
and forms, in the uttering of different views and in
anthropological diversity. Engaging with those who
challenge your right to hold the opinions you
hold, your faith and beliefs, your values, is perhaps the
most difficult path to follow. As a Portuguese woman, living in a country overlooking
the wide Atlantic, building bridges has
been almost instinctive. History and geography have made me. An immense curiosity for what lays beyond has shaped my journey and my story. I grew up in Macao, a
place in South East China, in a house overlooking the Pearl River, back then the natural border
between this territory overseen by Portugal and China, and across from the oldest Buddhist
temple in the city, dating back to the 15th
century, and dedicated to the goddess Mazu, locally named A-Ma. Further up the hill, a neat
six-minute walk from the temple, was St. Lawrence’s, our parish church. After school, my friends and I used to climb up the mossy rocks of the temple and observe with curiosity
the worshipers and, for our Western gaze,
their quaint practices. The monks were accustomed to
our intrusions and let us be, as they went about their daily routines, gesturing for us to stand where we would not disturb the rituals, but could respectfully
observe the ceremonies. Or even at times inviting
us to share a meal, which we initially rejected
with outright suspicion and then accepted. We cultivated this relationship eagerly, and in hindsight it
probably influenced many of the choices I was to make in life. Growing up in a multicultural
and multilingual setting, I developed an understanding
of the world not as a club for those who think alike
and enjoy the same tastes but as a public agora,
or assembly, that space where the Greeks interacted
with their neighbors, a space where everyone
regardless of culture, social status and religion
could have a voice. In the 1970’s, Macao was certainly one of the most cosmopolitan
spaces in the world, where Portuguese culture and Catholicism, and a very strong Jesuit
legacy, co-existed respectfully with Chinese traditions
and Buddhist spirituality. But this was also a time of
upheaval in South East Asia, of the Vietnam War, the surge in migration and the arrival of the
so-called Boat People, the invasion of East Timor. China was also changing rapidly. Cultural contact, or as
Pope Francis puts it, the culture of encounter is
the true cultural position. And when two different cultures
come together, suspicion, violence and antagonism are
much easier than dialogue. It takes courage to address
that which is alien, unalike, to engage with those who
deny one’s existence. That is in fact the difficulty
of the cultural encounter, and of Christianity, as such. But if we are to honor
the values we go by, there is no other choice. Christianity demands
that we take that step, calling for a willingness
to listen to the other, in the name and the spirit
of our common humanity, because the world does not
stop at the nation’s borders. In our global world,
responsible leadership comes with an ability to
listen, not simply babble, shout, bully and tweet away. My story– (audience applauding) My story was inevitably shaped
by an insatiable curiosity for cultural diversity,
understanding that my culture and my position were but a small event in the luxurious performance
of world cultures. The study of literature
came naturally, then. The stories and the dramas are
a gateway to the human soul, to politics and economics,
to destruction, perversity, transcendence and creativity. The wide word of literature
comprehends the whole world. In times of duress, the
memory of poems once loved, as the exiled Hannah Arendt recalled, upheld the possibility of
survival and the dream of return. I learnt that the journey
and the books create us, that fiction substantiates a sense of aspirational possibility which became personal resilience. It intensified ethical
awareness and a keen conviction that change can happen, but
not without one’s willingness to serve and act. Inspired by BC’s living values
and global educational model, a new journey begins now, a new twist in a flourishing story. You have been given the tools
to become great characters in a transformational plot, the kind of which will lead our runaway
world into new directions, inspired by solidarity
and not isolationism, respectful of our stunningly fragile globe and keenly aware that this
is perhaps the last chance to get the story right. It will not be easy,
things are complicated, but this is precisely their beauty. To be ethical leaders in this stunningly diverse
world takes courage. First, the courage to listen; secondly, the unwavering
defense of the right of others to be heard, even if in disagreement with your innermost beliefs, and to always speak up against abuse. Because– (audience applauding) Because we seem to have forgotten
the most beautiful story of all, that acknowledges
flaws and failure, but speaks of improvement
and potentiality, of the pursuit of a more perfect society, infused by freedom of
speech, assembly, religion, respect for democratic rule,
respect for human dignity, respect for the planet, ultimately, and we should never be
done with repeating it: acknowledging the universality
of basic human rights, the right to life, liberty and, as the American constitution
so beautifully puts it, to the pursuit of happiness. (audience applauding) We are the stories we tell. Be advised that, in the great
story, the share of duties and responsibilities is
to be equally weighed, irrespective of gender and ethnicity. Many years ago, as a sophomore,
reading English Literature in Lisbon, I was particularly
enthused by an anecdote told by Virginia Woolf in the
seminal “A Room of One’s Own.” There she tells how, upon
having been invited to speak at a prestigious British
university, she was intercepted by the Beadle, the official
usher of the college, while walking across the turf. He told her with stern
voice to step off the lawn, where only the male fellows could walk, and take the gravel path instead. The confrontation drew a
clear line between the spaces of the Beadle and the
woman, between herself and the all male scholars and fellows. The turf, which, as she ironically wrote, “Had been rolled for 300
years in succession,” could not be touched by
the gentle woman’s foot. Well, it became immediately
clear that it was going to be my life’s work to
walk across that turf. And as well to strive so that other women could have that same choice. (audience applauding) Despite the many advances
over the last decades, women make up only 5% of world leaders. Barely 33 of the Fortune 500
companies have women CEOs, and only 12% of universities in Europe and North America are
led by female presidents. Well, it is high time
for a radical plot twist that stems from a correct
reading of the needs of society and the potentialities at hand. It is basically a display
of fairness and good sense. (audience applauding) Women are great change makers, and in these interesting times there is an unquestionable
need for humane, competent and caring leaders. Women take care, but they
are also ready to take charge and take on the duties
and the responsibilities that are now entrusted to the other 50% of the world population. Women are brave, and selfless,
like Sister Maura Lynch, a doctor and a member of the
Medical Missionaries of Mary, with an extraordinary life
dedicated to women’s health in Angola and Nigeria. More than playing with words, women act. In the Gospel, the women that follow Jesus never doubt His word. They express themselves through
gestures, such as the woman that wet Jesus’ feet with her tears and wept them with her hair. They act with the strength
of their conviction and display an incredible
ability to serve. Women are daring, like Saudi
activists Loujain Al-Hathloul and Iman Al-Nafjan,
jailed without due process for the cheeky demand for driving rights. They are resilient, like Malala Yousafzai. They are champions of the underdog, like Anjezë Gonxhe
Bojaxhiu, aka Mother Teresa. Women are thought leaders, innovators, extraordinary trailblazers,
and superlative professionals in business, academia, politics. Profess these stories as your own and do not let good talent go to waste. Women of Boston College, I invite you to walk across that lawn. (audience applauding) Remember, we are the stories we tell. Class of 2019, after the preamble
of the educational years, the action chapters now begin. Take charge of your narrative
and build coalitions, as Pope Francis invites us to do, armed with the spirit of
a culture of encounter to build a more respectful
and inclusive society. We live in a world that is as diverse as it is beautiful and fragile. Take risks and dare to become role models for those who come after. Listen to the sounds and
the voices around you. Often, the challenge of borders
is a challenge of ignorance. If you want change, speak up. If injustice looms, defend your rights. Act wisely in the face of fear and never surrender your
compassion for those who cannot aspire to a life
well lived under the rule of law and in respect for human dignity. And, finally, I bid you,
in the immortal words of one famous member of the BC community, “Live long, and prosper.” Congratulations! (audience applauding) – The university chorale
will perform Tollite Hostias, composed by Camille Saint-Saëns. Tollite Hostias is the final movement of the Christmas Oratorio by Saint-Saëns. Today it is sung by the
underclassmen of the chorale, as an offering of love and support for all the members of the Class of 2019. (singing in foreign language) (audience applauding) – There now follows the
conferral of degrees in course in the order of the
founding of the schools. The dean of each school will present the degree representative to the president for the
conferral of the degree. – May I ask the candidates for the degree of Bachelor of Arts
and Bachelor of Science in the Robert J. Morrissey
College of Arts and Sciences to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present the candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Bachelor of
Arts or Bachelor of Science. Jorge Mejia will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience murmuring) (audience cheering) – Woo! (audience applauding) Please be seated. May I ask the candidates for the degree of Master of Arts and Master of Science in the Robert J. Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences Graduate
School to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present the candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Master of
Arts or Master of Science. William S. Higgins will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated. May I ask the candidates for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the
Robert J. Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences Graduate
School to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present the candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Mary T. M. Scharle will accept the degree on behalf of the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated. – May I ask the candidates for the degree of Master of Laws in the
Law School to please rise? Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present those candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Master of Laws. Chalcot Casal will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) May I ask the candidates for
the degree of Doctor of Laws in the Law School to please rise? (audience applauding) (audience murmuring) (chuckling) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present those candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Doctor of Laws. Marcus Nemeth will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) – May I ask the candidates for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in
the James A. Woods, S.J., College of Advancing
Studies to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present those candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify they are eligible for the degree of Bachelor of Arts. Gabriella Rose Hoxie will
accept the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated. May I ask the candidates
for the degrees of Masters of Science and of Masters
of Healthcare Administration in the James A. Woods, S.J.,
College of Advancing Studies to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, I’m honored
to present the candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify they are eligible for the degrees of Master of Science and Master of Healthcare Administration. Sister Maryud Milena Cortés Restrepo will accept the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) You may be seated. – May I ask the candidates for the degree of Master of Social Work in
the School of Social Work to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, I’m honored
to present those candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Master of Social Work. Alexandra J. de la Cerda will accept the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated.
– Wow! – May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the School
of Social Work to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, I’m honored
to present those candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Manuel Cano Moreno will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated. – May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Bachelor of Science in the Carroll
School of Management to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present those candidates who have completed all the requirements, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Bachelor of Science. Isaiah Cyprien will accept
the degree for his class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated. May I ask the candidates
for the degrees of Master of Business Administration,
Master of Science in Finance, and Master of Science in Accounting in the Carroll School of
Management to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present those candidates who have completed all the requirements, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degrees of Master
of Business Administration and Master of Science. Molly Whalen Robinson will
accept the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated. May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Management Studies in the Carroll School of
Management to please rise? Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present those candidates who have completed all the requirements, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Management Studies. C. U. Chen will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated. – May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Bachelor of Science in the William
F. Connell School of Nursing to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present these candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Bachelor of Science. Kate Miños will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) – [Female Student] We love you! (audience cheering) (audience applauding) – Please be seated. May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Master of Science and Specialty Certificates in the William F. Connell School
of Nursing to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present these candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Master of Science and for additional
specialties certificates. Colleen Schlagen will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated. May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Philosophy in the William F. Connell School
of Nursing to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present those candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Meredith Keels will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated. – May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in the Caroline and
Peter Lynch School of Education and Human Development to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present the candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Bachelor of Arts. Elizabeth Campbell will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience cheering) (audience applauding) Please be seated. May I ask the candidates
for the degrees of Master of Education, Master of
Arts, and Master of Science in the Caroline and Peter
Lynch School of Education and Human Development to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present the candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degrees of Master of Education, Master of Arts, and Master of Science. Adam Ady will accept the
degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the Caroline
and Peter Lynch School of Education and Human
Development to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present the candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Carrie Carter will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) – May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Bachelor of Sacred Theology, Master of Arts, Master of Theological
Studies, Master of Divinity, and Master of Theology in the School of Theology and Ministry to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I’m honored to present those candidates who have completed all
requirements for graduation, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Bachelor
of Sacred Theology, Master of Arts, Master
of Theological Studies, Master of Divinity,
and Master of Theology. Anthony Russo will accept
the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) Please be seated. May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Licentiate in Sacred Theology in
the School of Theology and Ministry to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I’m honored to present those candidates who have completed all requirements of the Ecclesiastical
Faculty at Boston College, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Licentiate
in Sacred Theology. Sam B. Rao, of the Society of Jesus, will accept the degree for the class. (audience applauding) – Thank you, president. (audience applauding) Please be seated. May I ask the candidates
for the degree of Doctor of Sacred Theology in
the School of Theology and Ministry to please rise? (audience applauding) Father President, on behalf
of the faculty I am honored to present those candidates who have completed all requirements of the Ecclesiastical
Faculty at Boston College, and I hereby certify
that they are eligible for the degree of Doctor
of Sacred Theology. Bernard Disco of the
Order of Saint Benedict will accept the degree for the class. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) – By virtue of the power
invested in me by the trustees of Boston College and the
Commonwealth of Massachusetts, I welcome to the Company
of Scholars the candidates who have been presented
to me by their deans and declare them respectively Bachelors, Masters and Doctors in their
appropriate discipline. Also– (audience applauding) Also, by virtue of the
power invested in me by the Chancellor of the
Ecclesiastical Faculty at Boston College, I
welcome to the Company of Scholars the candidates
who have been presented to me by the Dean of the School
of Theology and Ministry and declare them awarded
the degree of Licentiate in Sacred Theology and Doctor of Theology. Congratulations to all of you. (audience applauding) – May I ask… May I ask Maria Meyer to join– (audience cheering) (chuckling) (audience cheering) All right, now, we wanna tell
people why she’s up here. To join us for the presentation
of the Edward H. Finnegan of the Society of Jesus award. The Edward H. Finnegan of
the Society of Jesus award is presented each year
to the graduating senior who best exemplifies the
University’s motto “Ever to excel.” This year’s recipient, a
summa cum laude graduate from the Connell School of Nursing– (audience cheering) Has demonstrated outstanding
achievement in academics, leadership and service. She served as president of
the Connell School Senate and the Boston College
Chapter of Alpha Sigma Nu, the honor society of Jesuit
colleges and universities. She also held leadership positions with the Massachusetts
Student Nurses Association and the Boston College
Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau, the international honor
society for nursing. In her work and volunteerism, her care and concern for others shine through. She has responded to crisis calls on the Samaritans helpline,
mentored young girls in the Boston area through the Strong Women,
Strong Girls program, prepared high schools… (chuckles) Prepared high school students for the SAT, cared for children with
diabetes in a summer camp, and helped her Boston
College classmates both as a health coach in the
Office of Health Promotion and a tutor in the Connors
Family Learning Center. Her goal is to become a women’s
health nurse practitioner. (audience cheering) – [Female Student] Love you! – For her accomplishments, service and record of academic excellence, Boston College confers the
2019 Edward H. Finnegan of the Society of Jesus
award upon Maria Meyer of the Connell School of Nursing. (audience applauding) May I ask Patrick H. Byrne to
join us for the presentation of the Saint Robert Bellarmine of the Society of Jesus Award. (audience applauding) For nearly a half-century, professor of philosophy Patrick H.
Byrne has inspired students and faculty colleagues alike
with his passionate commitment to scholarship, teaching and
the Jesuit, Catholic dimensions of the University’s mission. Named for Saint Robert Bellarmine
of the Society of Jesus, a cardinal and influential
Jesuit professor, the Bellarmine Award honors a
distinguished faculty member whose contributions have consistently and purposefully advanced
the University’s mission. This accomplished Aristotelian
and Lonergan scholar has served Boston College in myriad ways, notably as the founder and guiding force behind the signature academic
iniciative the PULSE program for service learning, which
for nearly five decades– (audience applauding) Has educated students to be
proponents of social justice. In addition to being the
program’s inaugural director, Professor Byrne has served as one of its most popular teachers
for more than 40 years. I noted researcher with
particular interest in the philosophy of science, he’s the author of several books, including his most recent work
“The Ethics of Discernment: Lonergan’s Foundations for Ethics.” Professor Byrne’s leadership also extends to Boston colleges, Lonergan
Institute, which he directs, and to the Jesuit
Institute where he served as associate director. His roles on the Heights
also include service on the University Core
Development Committee and University Core Renewal Committee; as co-chair of the Task Force on Undergraduate Student Formation; after nearly three
decades as representative to the Lilly Fellows Program
in Humanities and the Arts, his award coincides with
the 50th anniversary of his graduation from
Boston College in 1969. (audience applauding) In recognition of his exemplary service, Boston College President,
William P. Leahy, of the Society of Jesus, presents
Professor Patrick H. Byrne with the 2019 Bellarmine Award. (audience applauding) (audience applauding) – Kevin McLaughlin,
Class of 1978, president of the Alumni Association,
will now address the graduates of the Class of 2019. – On behalf of the more than
182,000 Boston College alumni throughout the world, and as president of the Alumni Association,
it’s my special pleasure to Welcome all of you, the Class of 2019, to the Boston College
Alumni Association family. We trust that your Jesuit
education at Boston College has prepared you
intellectually and spiritually to seek ever to excel and to truly be men and women for others and
to be an influence for good in all your future endeavors. The Boston College Alumni
Association is ready to assist you in every way possible and
encourages your active involvement and participation in the
programs and activities of the Alumni Association
from this day forward so that together we can
carry on the rich traditions that characterize our great university. Best wishes and
congratulations to one and all. (audience applauding) – Ladies and gentlemen, may
I ask you to please rise for the benediction that will be offered by his Eminence Cardinal Seán O’Malley, Archbishop of Boston, and
please remain standing for the singing of the alma mater along with the university chorale. – Last year, during an address to students from Latin American Catholic
colleges and universities, Pope Francis call the young women and men to embrace the mission
of promoting dialogue rather than confrontation; opportunities for encounter
rather than division; and to allow for respectful
differences of opinion in order to provide opportunities to build and strengthen community life. The Holy Father noted that
by using our God-given gifts, our intellect, our
emotions and affections, and our capacity for productive activity, we can build a society in
the world where recognizing and responding to the
needs of all people is held to be a greater good than
the often relentless pursuit of individual interest. We are all counting on
you to use the wisdom and knowledge you have
acquired during your years here at Boston College for the greater good, to be a sign of the Light of
Christ in the world today. Let us pray. Lord God, send Your
spirit upon the graduates and our colleagues receiving
honorary degrees today. May they share their gifts and
talents generously and wisely with gentleness and humility, that all people may be inspired
to follow Jesus Christ, the Way, the Truth and the Life. Guided by the Holy Spirit,
may they seek ever to excel in their life’s work. In a special way, we also commend to Your loving care our
graduates, families, friends and teachers, with gratitude for their dedication and commitment. The Lord be with you. Blessed be the name of
the Lord now and forever. Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made Heaven and Earth. May Almighty God bless you, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. – [All The Rest] Amen. (solemn instrumental music) ♪ Hail Alma Mater ♪ ♪ Thy praise we sing ♪ ♪ Fondly thy mem’ries ♪ ♪ Round our heart still cling ♪ ♪ Guide of our youth, thro’ ♪ ♪ Thee we shall prevail ♪ ♪ Hail Alma Mater ♪ ♪ Hail, all hail ♪ ♪ Hail Alma Mater ♪ ♪ Lo, on the height ♪ ♪ Proudly thy tow’rs are ♪ ♪ Raised for the Right ♪ ♪ God is thy Master ♪ ♪ His law thy sole avail ♪ ♪ Hail Alma Mater ♪ ♪ Hail, all hail ♪ (audience applauding) – This concludes the
university commencement. (audience cheering) The School and College
diploma ceremonies will begin in approximately 30 minutes. The locations of the various
diplomas ceremonies are listed on the last pages of the
commencement program. And, finally, may I ask that
you please remain standing until the dignitaries at the platform and members of the faculty
have left the stadium. Graduates, please remain in your places until the music has concluded. Thank you. (lively instrumental music) ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ We sing our proud refrain ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ ‘Tis Wisdom’s earthly fane ♪ ♪ For here all are one and
their hearts are true ♪ ♪ And the towers on the Heights
reach to Heav’ns own blue ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ Till the echoes ring again ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ Thy glory is our own ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ ‘Tis here that Truth is known ♪ ♪ And ever with the Right
shall thy heirs be found ♪ ♪ Till time shall be no more
and thy work is crown’d ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ For Thee and Thine alone ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ We sing our proud refrain ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ ‘Tis Wisdom’s earthly fane ♪ ♪ For here all are one and
their hearts are true ♪ ♪ And the towers on the Heights
reach to Heav’ns own blue ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ Till the echoes ring again ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ Thy glory is our own ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ ‘Tis here that Truth is known ♪ ♪ And ever with the Right
shall thy heirs be found ♪ ♪ Till time shall be no more
and thy work is crown’d ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ For Thee and Thine alone ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ We sing our proud refrain ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ ‘Tis Wisdom’s earthly fane ♪ ♪ For here all are one and
their hearts are true ♪ ♪ And the towers on the Heights
reach to Heav’ns own blue ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ Till the echoes ring again ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ Thy glory is our own ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ ‘Tis here that Truth is known ♪ ♪ And ever with the Right
shall thy heirs be found ♪ ♪ Till time shall be no more
and thy work is crown’d ♪ ♪ For Boston, for Boston ♪ ♪ For Thee and Thine alone ♪ (audience cheering) (gentle instrumental music)

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