William & Mary

Sensharma '15 selected as student speaker for Commencement

  • Student speaker:
    Student speaker:  Anuraag Sensharma '15 will address W&M's Class of 2015 during this year's Commencement ceremony.  Photo by Sydney Mahan '16
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As seniors begin to prepare for life after graduation, whether moving on to graduate school or a new job, and underclassmen begin solidifying their summer plans, the end of the school year brings with it many changes, including accepting the unknown.  

The idea of the unknown is one of the many themes that Anuraag Sensharma '15 will discuss in his address as the Commencement student speaker this year. The ceremony will take place May 16 in William & Mary Hall.

"My hope is that in a time in our lives where so much regarding our futures is unknown, I can convey the idea that the things we don’t know can give us purpose and happiness rather than just stress," said Sensharma. 

Sensharma who grew up in Falls Church, Virginia, is graduating from the College with a Bachelor of Science in physics and a minor in mathematics. Outside of physics, he has been an active member of the music community at William & Mary as a clarinetist in the William & Mary Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra and Sinfonicron Pit Orchestra.

Although he has played the clarinet since the fourth grade, upon coming to William & Mary his freshman year, Sensharma found himself perpetually afraid to perform. Overcoming his fear of uncertainty when it came to playing the clarinet, while embracing the unknown seen within his physics major ultimately allowed him the foundation he is looking to convey in his speech.

"Reflecting on my college experience, I found myself contrasting my experiences with the two subjects which have been most important to me: physics and music," said Sensharma. "I started thinking some more about why I had such different attitudes towards uncertainty in these two different situations, and these reflections ultimately gave rise to my speech." 

Sensharma was called in to read his script several times as part of the Commencement student speaker competition before finally being chosen.

"I was pleasantly surprised," said Sensharma. "Although a little nervous about speaking in front of such a large crowd at such an important point in our lives ... it is an honor for me to address my classmates at this milestone, and I hope they get something out of the thoughts I’ve put together for the ceremony."

Although he is graduating this year, Sensharma is not saying goodbye to William & Mary just yet, as he is staying one more year to complete a master’s degree in education before pursuing a career in teaching.