Thursday Thought: A Commencement Inspiration for The Bosque School

image from
 I was honored beyond words that the students of The Bosque School in Albuquerque, New Mexico, not only remembered by presentation to them back in February, 2006, but also enjoyed it enough to ask me to speak at their commencement ceremony last night. 

It was not only an honor, but also a lot of fun, and exciting to see these energetic, young people moving from one phase of life to the next, commencing this new and intriguing chapter of life. And, it was great to hear after the ceremony that they enjoyed my brief, 20 minute speech about the wisdom I've gleaned from the mountains over the years. 

Many of them shared their dream summits with me afterward: playing professional soccer, returning as an MD to work on the nearby Navajo Reservation, and even some who hoped to one day be professional climbers. (I strongly advised them against that!)

The four key points of last night's commencement speech are still in my head, resonating with me as I hope they are with the newly-graduated Bosque Class of 2010:

  1. Dream…and dream big
  2. Get a helmet…it's a bumpy road ahead
  3. Don't take life too seriously…it's not
  4. And, keep your humanity…a box of pears and a hug means a lot more than summits and certificates

Thus, I thought for this Thursday Thought (I know, it's Friday, but I was a bit busy yesterday!) I'd share with you what I said to the students, faculty, Board of Trustees, and parents of The Bosque School for their 2010 commencement. It's a bit long, so I've uploaded the full speech as a PDF file


Jake Norton is an Everest climber, guide, photographer, writer, and motivational speaker from Colorado.

  1. Adayak
    AdayakJune 2,10

    Definitely going to save this speech for when I have some time. What was the topic of the presentation you gave 4 years ago, and can you put that online too?

  2. zilly
    zillyJune 10,10

    sure it is an interesting work to climb mountaneering

Leave a Reply