Merrill’s Navarro, Stoecker graduate from UW-Madison
Aaron Navarro, College of Engineering, Bachelor of Science-Civil Engineering and Joshua Stoecker, College of Agricultural & Life Sciences, Bachelor of Science, Biochemistry, both of Merrill, were among the more than 3,320 students who received degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, during the winter commencement ceremony on Dec. 16, 2018. About 1,300 graduates took part. Chancellor Rebecca Blank praised the graduates for working tirelessly to achieve the dream of a college degree. Chancellor Blank told graduates that the number one predictor of their impact will not be genius or luck, but how hard they try and how hard they work.
Keynote speaker Allan “Bud” Selig, commissioner emeritus of Major League Baseball and a 1956 UW-Madison grad, told graduates that when he was in their shoes more than 60 years ago, he figured he’d one day be a history professor. But that wasn’t his passion, he said. He dreamed instead of “a baseball life.” He persevered to make it happen, moving a bankrupt Seattle franchise to his hometown and founding the Milwaukee Brewers. “I knew if I were to live my dream, I had to be focused, I had to be resolute, and I had to be ready and willing to take a chance should an opportunity ever present itself,” he said.’
Student speaker Jamie Dawson, a crowd favorite with an enthusiastic fan club among audience members, encouraged her fellow graduates to “walk toward the things that give you joy,” but also to not be afraid of life’s complexities. On campus, she organized protests that gave underrepresented students a voice through art. Embrace your story, your opinions, your creativity, she said Sunday.
For more on the graduation, see https://news.wisc.edu/winter-commencement-surprises-celebration-and-moving-on-to-that-adult-thing/