Good afternoon ladies and Gentlemen! It’s truly an honor to be afforded this opportunity to speak and represent the class of 2016. We have succeeded in mastering this challenging course of study and have emerged on the other side victorious and so we need to share our laughter and success with others who have supported and inspired us to keep on going. From our parents, our siblings, our friends and even our workmates.
A special thanks to God for bringing us together and guiding us this far. I am not used to speaking in front of a large group as you can tell. I am afraid of all the stares, Afraid of making a mistake when I speak, mostly I am afraid that maybe my words will not inspire people.
Every one of us or at least most of us have had this kind of fear. Some of you might have the same fear that I have. The fear of failing. A true leader learns to conquer that fear and rise up. A true leader tells the world that courage doesn’t mean you don’t get afraid. Courage means you don’t let fear stop you. That is why I am standing here in front of all of you to ask you to conquer your fears.
Be strong! Be courageous! Be a beacon of hope for others who are staring at you. That is one of my prayer for all of you!
Hope school is a very unique school where we develop unique skills. One question that I have asked myself and perhaps would want to pose it you would be, with all of us graduating today does it automatically make us leaders?
I believe that leadership is earned not given and I believe all of us in Hope school came in as leaders or aspired to be one. After all who joins a leadership course if you had no intentions of being a leader somewhere! The leader in you has just been molded, modified to fit the world so that with the knowledge you have gained, you can be better, stronger and equipped in God's wisdom and spirit so that you can be a leader of Hope for others.
The world today believe leaders should be people with all the power, a lot of money, all the connections with other powerful people and who can influence the crowd or the people to do their bidding. A world where people hide their true feelings and hope that one person will speak up for them knowing all about their lives. As Mahatma Ghandi says, “you must be the change you want to see in the world.” You must be the people bold enough to take the first step from the hole of despair. You must have the courage to be a servant leader even when it’s with your last ounce of strength because the world is changed by your example not your opinion.
All in all class of 2016 all Hope school fraternity, stand up tall and know with the diploma you get today, you are making a pledge, a promise to your parents, to your friends, to yourselves that you are going to be a leader, a better leader, a servant leader.
I will finish with the words of John Quincy Adams, “if your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader!
Thank you and congratulations class of 2016.