UOG graduates 257 at their Fanuchånan commencement ceremony 

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University of Guam President Thomas W. Krise speaks to the 257 graduates and their family and friends at the Fanuchånan 2018 Commencement Ceremony. Photos courtesy of the University of Guam.

Guam – 199 undergraduate and 58 graduate students were awarded diplomas yesterday. At the ceremony, UOG President Dr. Thomas Krise presided over his first Triton commencement ceremony. Dr. Krise highlighted how this group of graduates would be adding to a 65 year tradition of discovering new knowledge and sharing it with our community.

University of Guam Valedictorian Mia Sara Dizon Madlambayan, in her address to fellow classmates, highlighted that graduates should not compare themselves to others, but rather follow their their dreams and pursue their goals at their own time.

University of Guam Valedictorian Mia Sara Dizon Madlambayan addresses her fellow graduates at the Fanuchånan 2018 Commencement Ceremony. Photos courtesy of the University of Guam

Quoting the legendary Ru Paul, Madlambayan stated “So many times, people are afraid to startsomething because of fear of failing. But, it can be fabulous, because it leads you to the next thing.”

The Ceremony’s Commencement Speaker was Attorney Julian Aguon. Aguon is a human-rights lawyer and lecturer at the University. The distinguished author also provided copies of his book, “Overcoming Speechlessness,” to every graduate.

In his address, Aguon emphasized the importance of finding ones fighting spirit. Aguon stressed the injustices happening around the world, and even here in our island paradise, and stated that news of it, is in fact no longer new, as he compared it to breakfast and bacon and eggs.

“The violence that is everywhere erupting—at the borders of this country, in Waffle Houses in Georgia, in parking lots in Guam—is of a different degree. A man choked to death for selling loose cigarettes. A woman shot to death for burning white rice. What we are seeing in our communities is increasingly barbaric behavior. And it’s immobilizing us, rendering us momentarily incapable of speaking—speaking back and speaking up.” said Aguon.

Julian Aguon, human rights lawyer and founder of Blue Ocean Law, delivers the commencement address at the University of Guam’s Fanuchånan 2018 Commencement Ceremony. Photos courtesy of the University of Guam.

In closing, Aguon stated “Congratulations Class of 2018. May you find not only your fighting words but your fighting spirit, too. Our broken world is waiting.”