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Simon Says: I Have the Best Commencement Speech You’ll Never Hear

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Now that we're in graduation season and someone you know has a diploma, here’s something I don’t think is very smart: famous people giving commencement speeches.

Good work if you can get it.   Some people can make six figures for showing up like Katie Couric did in 2006 at O-U. Matthew McConaughey was all right, all right, all right with the fee for speaking at the University of Houston---although he said the money was going to charity.

This spring at a school near you, everyone from Michael Keaton, Queen Latifa, and Oprah will be giving graduation advice.

A celebrity speech can get your parents get excited and perhaps bring a viral moment.

But what’s the value?

It’s ironic how universities shell out thousands of dollars for speakers they hope will turn into publicity, that hopefully attracts a new set of applicants.

You get the feeling it’s not for the graduates. It’s a marketing strategy for a kid who just got a driver’s license.

If I gave a commencement speech –I’d do it for free and give the grads advice and a reality that’s worth a lot.

How to deal with how scary it can be out there.

How many months it could take to get a job while managing the stress over your student loans.

How to deal with still living with your parents in a year because you can’t afford an apartment.  And when you go on a job interview –how to do your homework about the company and walk in with an original thought or concept.

And oh, yeah –once you’re hired—I’ll remind you to show up on time each day!

That’s real-life stuff for you –advice that will never get old.  Unlike those star-studded speeches that don’t age well.

So congrats to the class of 2018. Remember, famous words of wisdom can be like that cap and gown: after dealing with it once, you’ll never use it again.


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