President's Blog

Learning does not end at graduation

I very much look forward to celebrating the academic accomplishment of the 4,000 students graduating on Saturday.

A customary piece of advice in these circumstances is the idea that learning shouldn’t end at graduation, that learning is a life-long journey, that the most valuable outcome of going to college should be the desire to staying on that journey.

That advice is not only true but easier to practice than it’s ever been.

Even if you don’t pursue another degree (if you do, we’re here to help!), we have today more opportunities to continue our education than at any time in history. You can do it from home. You can do it on your schedule. You can do it on the go. We have pretty amazing resources at our fingertips. Many of them absolutely free!

I try to take advantage of these opportunities as often as I can myself. I am currently taking a Mason online course in digital humanities and also learning Italian on the Duolingo app. Not long ago, I took an online course in vaccine clinical trials.

The course in digital humanities is part of a Certificate in Digital Public Humanities offered by our Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media in collaboration with the Smithsonian.  The Duolingo app is free, fun, engaging and amazingly effective (un’esperienza fantastica!). And the vaccine trials course, created by Johns Hopkins University via Coursera, was quite useful for my work on the board of a pharmaceutical company (and free!).

The life-long learning journey is not only fun and fulfilling but, with today’s technology, amazingly pleasant and inexpensive. Give it a shot!

Congratulations to all our graduates!!!