About a year and a half ago, a relative of mine posted a video called “This is Water” on Facebook, and I was unexpectedly yet immediately captured by its message. The video is just a portion of the commencement speech given by David Foster Wallace (author of “The Infinite Jest”) at Kenyon College back in 2005. As this year's graduation season wraps up, I felt a strong need to share Wallace’s speech.
No, it doesn’t cover any deep or controversial topics; the message is quite simple, actually. But that doesn’t make it any less impactful or important.
Wallace explains how the point of education is to be well adjusted and more aware of our everyday surroundings.
We can act in our default settings, or choose to go through life trying harder to understand the circumstances of those around us.
Wallace’s message is relatable for everyone of all ages, regardless of if you are graduating this year, or not.
To the class of 2014: Congratulations! The world needs you, your unique perspective, and your full awareness and participation in life.
[Editor's Note: Although DFW's life and death have been criticized, we believe that the message shared in this video is important and valuable and worthy of sharing. As part of our mission and passion for education, Compliment seeks to provide opportunities for young women starting careers in writing, marketing, and web-based professions through our internship program. We are proud to feature the work of our interns and will continue to showcase their talent as they learn about e-commerce, hone their voices, develop their professional portfolios, and build the confidence to believe that they can contribute to making the world a better place.]