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I love the pomp and circumstance that marks commencement. It's the most important, picture-perfect day in the life of a university. And as a president, it's a great honor to present a diploma, shake hands and congratulate each graduate.

The tradition of commencement, one that spans hundreds of years, has a modern addition: the high-profile speaker. It's an approach I once supported. But my mind changed after becoming president of Ouachita Baptist University in 2016. I learned Ouachita's practice was not having an outside commencement speaker. It's a practice I've come to deeply affirm.

Here's why


Editorial Note: This article originally appeared as guest article in the Arkansas-Democrat Gazette on May 5, 2019. See the original here.



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