This past weekend our CEO, Jean Case, delivered George Mason University’s winter commencement address and received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters. George Mason is the largest public university in Virginia and sits at the intersection of a thriving changemaking community consisting of business, government, international and nonprofit organizations. More than 33,000 students from 130 countries matriculate into its three campuses each year.

As Jean took the podium on stage at the Eagle Bank Arena in front of a crowd of more than 5,000 graduates and guests, she shared four somewhat radical principles to help guide, inspire and empower each graduate as they embark on the next part of their life’s journey:

  • The safest path isn’t always the best path. 
  • Count on the fact that you will fail.
  • Don’t always listen to those who know best.
  • Your intelligence and your credentials won’t get you to where you want to go.

Her message was designed to challenge the class of 2015 to confront the world’s problems as opportunities waiting to be seized, struggled with and solved. A champion for next generation changemakers, Jean challenged each graduate to actively engage in life, in work and in their communities; to take risks, be bold and to fail forward. In essence, to fearlessly and fervently take on the challenge of making a better world. 

We invite you to watch her commencement speech in the clip below.