My fellow members of the class of 2013, we are about to make the transition from students to alumni. We have all had great experiences here at Dickinson. Bittersweet seems to be the word on everyone’s lips as we are constantly asked how we feel about leaving: bitter because we have loved our time at Dickinson and sweet because we are ready to move on. Moving on to this next step includes being an alumnus. As we take up this new role, we must also take up the responsibilities that come with it. We will become the stewards of this college. No matter where you go and what you do, you will remain a Dickinsonian. As a Dickinsonian it is your duty to protect Dickinson. Think back to every good memory you have had here, realize why you feel leaving is bitter and then understand that if it were not for the leadership of our current alumni, you could not have had those experiences. Without the donations of alumni you would not have met your best friend, explored the Trout Gallery, gone abroad, used the library or even come to Dickinson. The cost of every student’s attendance at Dickinson is $13,000 more than tuition. Obviously, we are graduating seniors and most of us don’t have an extra $13,000 lying around. This does not matter. What does matter is that each of us gives our small part. We must show that the class of 2013 will protect Dickinson; we must show that we want this college to stay great and become even greater. If you have had one happy moment here it is essential that you give back to Dickinson.
In a few years many of us will find ways to give money and time to Dickinson, but at this moment what is important is to give to the senior class campaign. This is not to raise a lot of money but instead to show that we will all do our part. Last year’s class had a pathetic participation rate of 39 percent. Only 39 percent of seniors gave last year—this is embarrassing. We must refuse to embarrass Dickinson as our predecessors did. This is the number that is important; we have set a goal of 65 percent participation. This goal is not lofty and we should easily surpass it. If you believe that Dickinson can be greater, you must give. If you do not want your undergraduate degree to be worthless, you must give. If you have had one good moment, met one good friend, had one good teacher, you must give because this is how we support Dickinson. This is how Dickinson will continue. If Dickinson is to become great it will start with young alumni who are willing to do their duty and give a little of what they have to Dickinson.