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Commencement Day message by the President
Aug 08, 2018
“Today is a special day. A day of new beginnings. A day to chart new journeys. The 7th Commencement Day of Sri Sri University.
It is a day to celebrate the last 7 years- 7 years of growth, achievements, milestones, successes, awards,stories, learnings and beautiful memories.
Its also a day to recommit ourselves to Gurudev, Poojya Sri Sri Ravi Shankari ji’s vision of holistic value education in India.
I welcome all the new students of academic year 2018-19 to Sri Sri University of the Art of Living Foundation. You are now a part of a global organization which has a network spread across 155 countries. Probably only the United Nations has a network wider than this.
Our journey so far has been truly transformational. When I visited this site in 2009, it was a barren empty land with few thorny bushes and large unusable quarries. Today its a vibrant, bustling campus with 35,000 trees and over a million square feet of infrastructure. Hostel buildings, academic buildings, libraries, computer labs, auditorium, amphitheatres, ISO 22000 certified kitchen, tennis courts, badminton courts, cricket ground, soccer field, volley ball and basket ball courts, gymnasium, convenience stores, laundry, salon, saloon , cafeterias, medical services- every conceivable academic and living facility is available on campus! We started with 43 students and are close to 2000 students today. This is an extremely rapid growth by any standards. In a few years, we will have 10000 students !
Today all of you have become a part of this growth story. The beauty of education in Sri Sri University is that not only will you learn in your classroom from your books and teachers, you will also have a chance to learn practically as you participate in the everyday progress of our University.
This is a very unique opportunity. Very few people get a chance to build an institution.Ideas are aplenty. To convert an idea into a institution requires guts. It requires courage, commitment and resilience. We are committed to make this University the best in the world. There are challenges and they will never go away. Notwithstanding those, we will bring the best of the world to Sri Sri University and take the best of Sri Sri University to the world.
You have to become an equal partner to make this happen. For this I have 5 pieces of advice for every student.
- Have a goal
Be clear about your goal. Where do you see yourself 1 year from now, 3 years from now, 5 years from now and 10 years from now. Think. Think hard. Most importantly write it down. Once you have written it, review it a few times.Rewrite it. Keep this piece of paper close to you. As the world around you changes, you will need to redraft them. Without a goal, a northern star for your life, no other effort is of any use. If you don’t know where you want to go, even the best road can’t take you to your destination.
- Work Hard
There is no substitute for hard work. This University was not built by people who believed in short-cuts. There is a research which says that to master a skill, you have to put in a total of 10,000 hours of deep, solid, purposeful work. There is no other way to achieve what you want. Time is your biggest wealth. Don’t squander it away. For every minute that you waste, remember there are thousands of children your age working away towards their goals.
- Read, Write, Speak, Listen and Network
Today, the whole world is at your fingertips. You can be an author from your computer. You can be a singer – all you need is your phone.Read about whats happening in the world..In your own field. Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, Blockchain is reshaping the very foundation of life as we know it. How much do you know about it? Listen to podcasts, inspirational talks of successful global figures. Make it a habit to write everyday, speak in a formal way everyday. It will sharpen your communication- this is most critical in the world of today. Network- Today because of Linkedin, Twitter etc you can get connected to anyone in the world. Use this to your advantage to learn from these people.
- Practice Gratitude
Life is not perfect, society is not perfect, neither are you and me. Problems, challenges are a part of life.If we are stuck with imperfections, we will not go anywhere.
But if you practice being grateful, your life will transform in an unimaginable way.
As Gurudev said: ‘There will be a million reasons to be grateful and billion to complain, so you choose what you want to do.” Maintain a gratitude journal. Every night write 3 things you are grateful for in the day. Your life will be flooded with a positive energy and will give you the strength to achieve anything you want.
- Be your own Person
At this age, it is easy to be pressurized and get influenced. Practice being your own person, stand tall, stand courageously. Spiritual practices that you learn here- like pranayama, Sudarshan kriya will strengthen you from within and make you entered. If you keep becoming swayed by every opinion and feeling, you cannot go very far.
This campus is a place of infinite possibilities. What you can achieve is limited only by your own mind, your own thinking.
Open your mind, come out of your comfort zone, break your boundaries.
The whole world is there for you to win.
We wish you an exceptional year ahead.
We commit to build an institution which is Indian at heart and global in outlook.