Notes from the Class of 1970

50 years have passed since the Class of 1970 graduated from McMaster. Here are there notes of congratulations to the Class of 2020.

When I graduated fifty years ago I had no idea where my life would take me, but I knew that my university education offered many opportunities and possibilities.

Be open to new and different challenges, you just don’t know what will evolve. Be brave, be strong and follow your heart, happiness will follow. Keep pursuing on-going learning; I completed three more degrees after Mac, who knows what I might do in my 70s!

– Peggy Morrison, Social Sciences

It’s really tough to work for four years and miss the ultimate recognition. But know that your grad will happen, even if delayed. Probably bigger and better! 

Value each and every day with loved ones. Patch up disagreements, kiss your family when you can and know that life doesn’t last forever. 

Make today count. Try not to live in future promises but in present circumstances, no matter how challenging they are. Make love your goal every day, in every way. Nothing else matters in the end. Sending you all love, know that you will make the world a better place. 

– Susan Garrod-Schuster, English & Psychology

Walk the beautiful campus. Keep in touch with your friends. Remember that, “laughter, is the best medicine!”

– Terry Buddin, CAPE

Congratulations, 2020 graduate. While you are graduating in a unique period, you will treasure it as the most memorable graduation in Mac’s history. Having graduated 50 years ago, I assure you that the future is yours. The outlook is as good as ever – and you graduate the most prepared technologically for tomorrow. I wish you all success and make your own future.

– Roy Verstraete, Chemical Engineering

When I graduated 50 years ago, little did I realize my McMaster education was a firm foundation for life ahead, and that life meant I would be constantly learning. Congratulations on earning that “firm foundation for life” but don’t stop learning as life is filled with new lessons.

– Cliff Bilyea, Business

Here we are in a 2020 world that’s virtually closed down. You have the opportunity to help open it up to new realities of cooperation across social, economic and scientific sectors. We need a cross-section of practical visionaries for a healthy planet for all, and there is a role for each of you. Congratulations, Class of 2020… and best of luck!

– Barbara Gillmor, Social Sciences

My wish for you is that you will not let the result determine who you are. Who you are is determined by the quality of your journey, your intent and effort!

– Roch Cheng, Electrical Engineering

I’m sure that it is sad to miss convocation this year but the degree that you earned is so important. Hopefully you will have an opportunity to celebrate with your fellow graduates later and share the experiences that you will have over the coming year.

We never know what the future will bring. There are always surprises for us at every turn. Remember, “whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should,” the Desiderata, as quoted by Pierre Trudeau.

– Gerry Fuchs, Science

Well done, you! You’ve made the first big step by showing the world that you can achieve at a high level and you’ve done it at, what only be described as, a trying time. You’ll no doubt go on to further education but I hope you’ll treasure this moment as much as I did fifty years ago.

– David Knight, Social Sciences

You’ll never walk alone!

– Peter Yue, Economics & Business

Congrats, you did it! Bravo. Success in the first phase of life with more to come. Your profs gave you tools to allow you to earn a living doing something you like, but life will teach you something no one can: EXPERIENCE. 

Embrace it. Use it wisely. Learn from it. You will win sometimes and when you don’t, learn from it. Don’t repeat mistakes. Experience is hard-earned. Use it wisely… it will serve you beyond your dreams. 

– Samy Elaraby, Chemical Engineering

Dear graduate of 2020, I want to wish you much adventure as you move to the next stage of lifelong learning. Speaking from my vantage point of fifty years since graduation, I can say that you will encounter so many opportunities to learn in all sectors of your life. Take the foundation you have created at McMaster and use it to move in any direction that engages you; you will be surprised and fulfilled by the journey!

– Jane Thomson, Political Science

My years at Mac included late night labs, hurrying to the next class, terrifying exams… but I remember a lot of laughs too. I hope you remember your years at Mac fondly. A university degree is something you will always have and it will open doors for you, and you will always know you were the one who did it! CONGRATULATIONS!!

– Lynda Golini, Nursing

The most important thing to remember is that you are a person and you have education and gifts which are a privilege and a responsibility wherever you are.

– Will Bryant, English & History

I want to congratulate the 2020 graduates and wish you future success in all your endeavors. “Enjoying life is a dynamic, active, purposeful process, meeting both the triumphs and disasters with the same resistless vigour. Enjoying life depends upon our inner consciousness – not so much upon what happens to us, but upon our reaction to the happenings.”

– Viola Weil, English & Psychology

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