MIT president Susan Hockfield and Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick shared a light moment before offering encouragement to the 1,065 undergraduates and 1,435 graduate students who earned degrees at the 143rd commencement exercises in June–students who, as Hockfield said, might wish they were graduating “in simpler, sunnier times.” “Crisis is a platform for change,” Patrick said. “Your ideas and contributions will defy prediction.” Hockfield said, “This world may not be dispensing easy rewards, but in its urgent call for your intelligence, inventiveness, passion, and drive, it offers you an extraordinary gift. To successfully battle the great problems of the day–from climate change to computer security, from health care to hunger, and from energy to the economy–will take extraordinary feats of science and discovery, engineering and invention. It will take precisely the kind of innovations and innovators that the world has come to expect from MIT.” She added, “The future may feel like an uncharted new country, but you already speak its language.”
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