‘Let’s go change this world,’ Paul Smith’s grad speaker says
PAUL SMITHS — Gabriella Buchler stood on a stone pathway at Paul Smith’s College Saturday and eagerly waited alongside her classmates as the sound of a bagpipe echoed across the mud-and-grass-patterned courtyard.
Buchler, 21, was one of 206 students conferred degrees at the college’s 2019 commencement ceremony.
A student with a summer job as a baker at a local supermarket, the Delmar native intends to take her Bachelor of Professional Studies degree in Baking Arts and Service Management, and return to her home in Albany County, where she’ll kick-start her career in the world of pastries.
“I want to work in as many bakeries as possible before opening up my own,” she said.
From inside a large white tent before her, the sound of “Land of Hope and Glory” arose. She adjusted her cap and gown, smiled and moved forward.
This year’s graduates come from a generation bound to make an impact on this world, according to Rocco Richard Cavalluzzi Jr., a student who earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences.
Cavalluzzi, of Greenville, served as the class speaker.
“We are the generation of change,” he said on Saturday. “No matter what we study … we have the power to positively impact the world.
“It’s not goodbye; it’s see you later,” he added.
“Now let’s go change this world.”
State Sen. Betty Little, R-Queensbury — who received an honorary civil law degree at the ceremony — delivered this year’s commencement address.
Little implored graduates to become ambassadors of the Adirondack region.
“You live in the Adirondack region, and the region lives in you,” she said.
She likened graduates’ lives to a mountain hike.
“At times the climb is easy. Sometimes it’s painfully steep,” she said. “You may stumble. You may start the day with sunshine before it turns to darkness. You may get lost.
“One thing we know is that hikers have a bond amongst themselves. So, too, do college alumni.”
Little said that for each of them, the summit would be different — and liable to change.
“Once you get to the summit, the view is worth the hike,” she said. “The satisfaction is always worth the work.
“Aim high, and appreciate every step of the way.”