Dr. Amy Gutmann to Penn grads: “Nerds can get girls”

Photo credit: University Communications

Every year, I make it a point of listening to Penn’s commencement speech as a good dose of inspiration.

After the jump, listen to Dr. Gutmann’s very creative, Hollywood movie-themed commencement speech she gave at the 2011 ceremonies yesterday …and be sure to listen for some very special sound effects added at key moments during her speech!

I encourage all of you to watch this speech and then continue pursuing your dreams.

In her speech above, Dr. Gutmann gave us life lessons from the following films:

  • The Wizard of Oz – Brains, heart and courage come in handy
  • Casablanca – Dedicating ourselves to a higher purpose and deep loyalties are values we should always treasure
  • The Social Network – Virtual relationships are no substitutes for real ones.  Nerds can get girls but not if they are also “bleeps” (not sure I understood this reference)
  • True Grit – shows us that perseverance pays off (we know this from THESE DT stories I’ve done)
  • Avatar – Respect nature and each other
  • Titanic – No ship or scheme or strategy is unsinkable (except of course for the “Titanic” ship?!)
  • E.T. – Should remind you to phone home
  • Silence of the Lambs – Gives a whole new meaning to having an old friend to dinner
  • Julie and Julia – Despite what doctors say, everything is better with butter.
  • The Kings Speech – Teaches us to judge individuals not by their rank, but by their merit.
  • Philadelphia – We should think of others
  • The Philadelphia Story – Be true to ourselves
  • Rocky – Pursue your dreams
  • Unstoppable – If you combine courage with creativity, if you remain determined, then success is unstoppable.

Listen to this through. I got a good chuckle from the sound effects added to the speech at minutes 3:33 and 13:13.

Because I know all of you alumni out there are super creative, what films did Dr. Gutmann leave out from her list above that you drew true life lessons from? Comment in the “Add New Comment” text box below : )



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