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Celebrating a Beginning

USC Marshall and Leventhal graduates urged to be “courageous” at Commencement 2017

May 12, 2017
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At USC’s 134th Commencement on May 12, 2017, 1,000 USC Marshall and 245 Leventhal graduates celebrated their achievements as students and the beginning of their professional lives.

“Whether it’s running a company, starting your own business, standing up for yourself, speaking out—all of these things take courage. USC, your secret weapon is superior courage.” --Julia A. Stewart

Three business leaders spoke to graduating students during three satellite ceremonies: Julia A. Stewart, former chairman and CEO of DineEquity; Alan C. Fox, real estate investor, entrepreneur and best-selling author; and Dr. Sabrina Kay, serial entrepreneur and founder of Fremont College. Their accomplishments model the entrepreneurial and philanthropic spirit nurtured in Marshall students throughout their academic careers.

“Be courageous”

James G. Ellis, Marshall dean, welcomed the audience at the Galen Center ceremony for Marshall undergraduates. Marshall students, he said, have the skill sets and values to make the world a better place.

In her commencement address, Stewart told the grads to “Be courageous.”

“Whether it’s running a company, starting your own business, standing up for yourself, speaking out—all of these things take courage,” Stewart said. “USC, your secret weapon is superior courage.”


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"Be Audit You can Be"

In an afternoon ceremony in Epstein Family Plaza, Fox shared with undergraduate and graduate accounting students a list of 10 lessons he learned out "in the real world" of accounting, including: "Life has no trade-in value. Remind yourself often to find the joy or the value or the lesson in whatever you are doing in the moment."

"Life has no trade-in value. Remind yourself often to find the joy in whatever you are doing in the moment." --Alan C. Fox


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"Choose Wisely"
At an evening ceremony at the Galen Center, Dean Ellis charged USC Marshall graduate students to "show the business world what leadership really is.”

Dr. Sabrina Kay urged students in her commencement speech to “choose every moment wisely and focus on your goals.”