A few weeks ago, 2,700 new graduates joined the ranks of UT Arlington alumni. Many of them attended our third annual Graduation Celebration, featuring first lady Laura Bush (see 'Be that light in someone's life'). It was a memorable night for our University and community.
But the real highlight for me was knowing that a UT Arlington education had made a difference in so many lives. The time that our graduates spent at UT Arlington helped shape who they are today—and who they will become tomorrow. My strongest hope is that commencement is not the end of their time here but the beginning of a lifelong relationship.
"I have always appreciated the fact that education doesn’t give us all the answers; in fact, it sometimes means we have more questions because we see how much bigger the world is than our own experiences. I want all of our alumni to know ... that a UT Arlington education will serve them well, no matter what path in life they choose."
This is the legacy of UT Arlington alumni: You are engaged and involved in the life of your alma mater, and I appreciate your continued commitment.
Higher education transforms. When the members of our class of 2007 enrolled, they were no doubt much different than they are today. They have been tested, their understandings have expanded, their horizons broadened.
Every generation of students experiences unique challenges on the way to graduation. For the class of 2007, it was learning to cope with a rapidly changing world—from multitasking, to balancing career and family, to understanding that the will to succeed is sometimes as important as ability.
This, of course, prepared them for what’s to come now that they’ve graduated. At UT Arlington, they learned the importance of collaboration and consensus building. They learned that their education will expose them to a world of new questions, new perspectives and new dreams.
I have always appreciated the fact that education doesn’t give us all the answers; in fact, it sometimes means we have more questions because we see how much bigger the world is than our own experiences. I want all of our alumni to know—whether they graduated in 2007 or 1957—that a UT Arlington education will serve them well, no matter what path in life they choose.
Our newest alumni are well-positioned to take the next step in their lives. They may face difficult tasks but should always remember that their education has given them an intellectual compass that will guide them in making decisions. What they have learned at UT Arlington establishes a foundation for what they will do and what they will become. In short, they have learned what it means to be a mentor, a leader and a Maverick.
I am proud to welcome the class of 2007 to the ranks of Maverick alumni. They will illuminate the way for future generations. That’s the legacy of UT Arlington alumni.
— James D. Spaniolo
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