William & Mary

Video of Condoleezza Rice's Commencement remarks

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Education is a privilege and one that bears responsibilities, Condoleezza Rice told William & Mary’s Class of 2015 Saturday morning.

“So as you leave, I ask you to bear a few things in mind: Be passionate about what you choose to do in life; use your powers of reason; cultivate humility; remain optimistic and always try to serve others and the goals of freedom and justice,” she said.

Rice, U.S. Secretary of State from 2005 to 2009, served as the university’s 2015 Commencement speaker, addressing a crowd of approximately 10,000 in William & Mary Hall. She also received an honorary Doctor of Public Service degree at the event.

As the members of the Class of 2015 leave the university, Rice said, they “join the ranks of the world’s most privileged community, the community of the educated."

“Capture this moment forever in your mind’s eye – the day when you and your parents and your family and your friends came to this place to celebrate a new beginning,” she said. “And affirm on this day that as you leave this place, you will always remember why you came.”