On December 13th, HPP’s Founder & Executive Director Martha Ryan gave the commencement address to the graduates of the University of San Francisco (USF)’s School of Education and the School of Nursing and Health Professions.
USF also awarded Ryan with an honorary doctorate for her work championing the rights of homeless families in the fight against childhood poverty.
An excerpt from Ryan’s words to the graduating class of 2013:
“When I was younger, I thought working for social justice meant transporting your life out of the comforts of home and into areas of extreme hardship. And indeed that experience was formative. However, perhaps what I learned most was that people needed healing everywhere. You can make a difference anywhere…
Howard Thurman, an African American theologian, said it beautifully. He said, ‘Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.’
Find your inner light and go out and light the world on fire! Believe that YOU can do it.”
For video of the December 2013 Commencement Ceremonies please click here.
(Ryan’s speech, with an introduction by Dean Karshmer, begins at approx. 25:27).