UT Emeritus Women’s Athletic Director Joan Cronan provided the commencement address for CCI’s Spring Commencement Ceremony at Thompson-Boling Arena on May 12, 2016. Over 230 graduating seniors, master’s and doctoral students, including many honor students and student athletes, were recognized at the ceremony.
Cronan told the graduates they need three “C’s” as they move forward into their careers: “confidence, competition and communication.”
Her recipe for gaining confidence is to “learn as much as you can about something, have a mentor, and never underestimate the importance of networking.”
She said that competitors “make me search for ways to improve my products and my services.”
Cronan then shared two recommendations regarding communication.
- “Learn to Say Thank You: so many people helped you get to this point – be sure they know you appreciate them. I believe in written notes; I hope you have seen the Gatorade commercial about Peyton’s hand written notes. If not, make sure you see it. Hats off to Gatorade for great communication.
- Learn to Network: We have all heard the saying ‘it is not what you know but who you know.’ I am going to change that a little and say It is not what you know, and not who you know, BUT who knows you.”
After Cronan’s inspiring address, Provost Susan Martin conferred the degrees on the graduates and each school recognized its graduates individually.
For the first time in the history of the college, the Commencement Reception was held on the new CCI patio overlooking the Tennessee River and Neyland Stadium. The setting provided the perfect backdrop for family photos and for saying goodbye to friends and faculty.
To view the video of the ceremony, see the uncaptioned version at http://sf.ites.utk.edu/utk/Play/2656f56c2b4f4b4f8b15dc723df05f8c1d (uncaptioned). The captioned version is also available.