“Do not stop doing homework. Earn your seat at the table and remember that you have been hired to provide input, so share your stories and experiences with the world. Constructive conversation will lead to conflict. Learn how to navigate the conversations early and often,” Neby said. “Show kindness and compassion to people, no matter the heights your career takes you to. Explore your biases, understand how people perceive you, listen to learn, because conversations build connection and connection builds teams.”
Ira Hoffman, of Morris, Minn., majoring in applied mathematics and computer science, spoke in the CSTEMM ceremony.
“When you all exit these doors, I hope you will walk with happiness and pride. I hope you count the small victories right up there among the milestones. As a new graduate, you may feel pressure to change the world or solve every problem that exists. Just know that nobody knows how to fix the world, but you can improve your communities and foster new friendships,” Hoffman said.
Nilu Umarova, of Vahdat, Tajikistan, majoring in real estate property management and hotel, restaurant and tourism management, spoke in the CACHSS and CEHHHS ceremony.
She overcame financial and personal challenges to study in the U.S. with support from the UW-Stout and Menomonie community. “Stout has been a place where many of my dreams came true and where I met so many kind people from all over the world and made lifelong friendships. Thank you, Menomonie, for allowing us to be part of this community. Thank you, Stout, for being my happy place and home to all of us during these four years,” she said.
Emily Laird, of Eau Claire, Master of Science in technical and professional communication, spoke in the Graduate School ceremony.
“I task you with the same thing I task myself, continue to pave the way for those who will one day take the journey we celebrate today. Remember those moments that drove you, those moments that kept you going. Carry them forward and do amazing things. Pave the way for the future generations of Stout graduates just as those who previously graduated have done for us,” said Laird, who works in Learning and Information Technology at UW-Stout.
Provost Glendali Rodriguez presided over the ceremonies, which included music by the UW-Stout Symphonic Band and the Jazz Orchestra, directed by Aaron Durst; and the Chamber Choir and the Symphonic Singers, directed by Jerry Hui.