Even though spring is slow to come to the Green Mountains, I always look forward to this time of year. The sun sets later, everyone feels more energized, and before you know it, Frisbees and Wiffle balls start to appear.
For our graduating seniors, the end of the school year brings excitement. The race to finals begins, and there are so many events to pack in between now and commencement that life can feel like a rollercoaster. But it can also bring trepidation. For those commissioning, beginning new careers, or entering graduate school, these final weeks can seem like the last carefree days of youth, before society brands you as mature, responsible adults.
We at Norwich know you are already mature and responsible. Otherwise, you would not have made it this far. Your professors, coaches, and military mentors are proud to be sending you out into the world as capable leaders, worthy of wearing the Norwich ring.
But it is not over yet. In the coming weeks, there will be papers to write, projects to finish, and examinations to pass. There will be celebrating, of course, but your undergraduate years will not be truly behind you until you drive down Route 12 with Plumley Armory in your rearview mirror.
I would encourage you to finish the year strong. Enjoy the time you have left with your classmates, and support each other right to the end. Part of this means keeping out of trouble, and being responsible to one another and the community. Have fun, be safe, and respect your Northfield neighbors: Don’t let the actions of a few ruin the experience for everyone. And when you leave, leave a good impression.
Remember, you are the face of Norwich. And whether you realize it or not, for the rest of your lives, the University will be judged by your actions. If those actions are honorable, you will bring honor to yourself and to Norwich. So let your conscience guide you.
Our first guiding value states, “We are men and women of honor and integrity.” This means choosing the hard right over the easy wrong, standing by your word, and respecting others. You chose Norwich because you instinctively knew this to be true. Now go out into the world and prove it.