Playlist: Featured

2013 Commencement Ceremony

May 4, 2013 1:33:27
Kaltura Video

The 2013 Charge to the Class was be delivered by Paul O'Neill. Also includes Susan Collins, Carl Simon, Amazin' Blue, Eli Day (BA'13) & Cynthia Rathinasamy (MPP'13). May, 2013.


[ Applause ]
[ Adjusting mic ]
>> Good evening everybody.  Please take your seats.  Thank you.
[ Moving around ]
I'm Susan Collins the Joan and Sanford Weill Dean of the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.  And I am just thrilled to have all of you here with us this evening.  It was a real pleasure to meet many of you yesterday at the Ford School's commencement open house and it is just a real honor to welcome all of you here for what is really just such a highlight, the culmination of the academic year, the Ford School's 2013 commencement ceremony.  I'd like to start by introducing the members of the Platform Party.  With me on stage is the Honorable Mr. Paul O'Neill, our commencement speaker who will be introduced more fully in just a few minutes.  To Paul's left is Janet Weiss who is the Dean of the Rackham Graduate School and the university's Vice Provost for Academic Affairs for Graduate Studies.  Well officially, Janet is here representing the university of Michigan but it is our great fortune to count her as a member of the Ford School's faculty.  And so I'm delighted that she is here with us this evening.  Also on stage there are two additional faculty colleagues, John Ciorciari, who will be reading the names of our graduates and Paul Simon, who will deliver the faculty address a little bit later.  And finally, elected by their respective classmates to provide the student commencement addresses we have the soon to be Ford School MPP graduate, Cynthia Rathinasamy and BA Graduate Eli Day.
[ Applause ]
Well, two years ago I traveled to Washington D.C. to attend the dedication of a beautiful new statue of President Ford, which stands in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda as one of the two statutes that represent the state of Michigan.  That statute was created by a young sculptor and University of Michigan graduate, J. Brett Grill.  The statue really captures something profound about our schools namesake and it does that so well that Marty Allen, a long time friend of the Ford School commissioned a scale model of that work, of President Ford for his centennial, the 100th anniversary of his birth, which we have been celebrating throughout the year 2013.  That model now stands in the Ford School's Great Hall and I hope that those of you who were with us for the open house yesterday had a chance to see it.  And perhaps you were there earlier this spring when we unveiled the statue.  But for those who have not had a chance to see it yet, it really portrays President Ford in a very special way.  He is standing.  He has books in one hand and the other hand perhaps has just opened his jacket.  But the expression on his face ready and open.  It's ready for whatever might come his way.  His stance is of a man who is moving forward, a man about to move towards whatever issue or challenge may arise.  And when asked what he wanted to express in this quiet but really powerful statue of President Ford, Brett Grill replied that he tried to capture Ford and I quote, "Standing up and trying to heal a country; doing the right thing rather than the popular thing."  Doing the right thing, not the popular thing, running towards a challenge instead of away from it.  We saw examples of that kind of heroism recently during the tragic events of the Boston Marathon.  Faced with the unimaginable everyday people most completely unknown to one another ran towards the injured and towards those who were in need and they tried to help and to comfort them.  To put one's fears aside and run towards whatever the challenge might be is difficult and it's humbling.  It's also an example of people, of citizens at their very best.  And as President Ford once said, "Good citizenship", and again I quote, "Requires personal involvement and action to bring about change."  Well, we live in a time that many believe is as challenging as President Ford's era.  But the challenges of our time are not insurmountable and Ford School students believe that wholeheartedly.  In fact, they count on it and they will run towards the challenges that the policy world throws at them and we know there will be many challenges.  They will catalyze great change in the world.  Today's graduates already understand what President Ford knew and that is that citizenship entails engagement.  That public service demands humility and openness and that leadership requires both compassion and the courage to make difficult choices.  Well bravo graduates.  We are so proud.  You have to keep up the good work for the classes of 2013.  But before our graduates cross this stage and take up those new challenges, it seems like a good time to address a question that might be a common one in some of your family gatherings.  And that question is just what is public policy anyway?  Well public policy is our collective quest to address the most pressing and stubborn problems and to seize opportunities for society.  How can good science be translated into action to slow the pace of climate change.  How can we address the persistently high unemployment and slow job growth, especially in struggling Rust Belt cities such as Detroit?  How can we ensure that human rights and security are maintained in the context of growing threats to that security.  The complexity of these and other challenges requires bright and energetic doers who are prepared to move forward to find creative and viable solutions.  Well in 2014 the Ford School will celebrate 100 years of educating those sorts of public policy professionals.  Launched in 1914 we were the first graduate program in the nation to train professionals for public servants, service in local governments.  And then in 1968 during one of this country's most tumultuous years IPPS was born.  We were renamed the Institute for Public Policy Studies and our focus shifted to emphasize social science research, economics, political science, sociology and more, as the foundation of sound public policy.  Like today's graduates IPPSters as they were finally called received rigorous training in the quantitative analysis of economic, political and organizational questions.  Our focus also broadened to encompass national and international issues as well.  And in 1999 the school was named for President Gerald R. Ford and we wear that name so proudly.  As I have mentioned this year marks the 100th anniversary of his birth and we have been actively celebrating President Ford's remarkable life and legacy throughout the year.  That legacy is very much alive here at his namesake school, where we draw example and inspiration from his lifelong commitment to public service, his courage and his decency.  Being named for President Ford catalyzed an era of tremendous growth, including the school's physical space as we moved into the beautiful Weill Hall in 2006.  And growth in our educational programs has truly reshaped our identity.  It has made us one of the most esteemed public policy schools in the nation.  A comprehensive full service school with outstanding PhD and undergraduate programs added to our flagship Master's degrees.  So far, 52 students have received joint Doctoral degrees in public policy in either economics, sociology, or political science.  And they have had impressive success in the job market earning tenure track faculty positions, prestigious post-doc fellowships and research posts with organizations such as the Federal Reserve Board, the Treasury Department, Mathmatica Policy Research and the Gates Foundation.  We launched our undergraduate program in the fall of 2007 and it was an immediate success in terms of the quality of students it attracted, the deep engagement of our faculty in teaching and mentoring and the post-graduate impact of those students.  Our BA alums are working in troubled school districts as Teach for America volunteers.  They're serving abroad in the Peace Corps.  They're learning the ropes in D.C. and on political campaigns and they're earning advanced degrees in pursuing PhDs in fields such as law, business, public policy, medicine and higher education.  Our excellent faculty continues to expand and with joint appointments that range from political science, sociology, math and history to business, social work, education, natural resources, information and urban planning.  Faculty expertise at the Ford School is truly broad and deep.
Our students will tell you that our faculty are also thoughtful enthusiastic teachers and mentors.  And they're actively engaged through their game changing research and they're direct public service with critically important policy challenges and let me give you just two examples.  John Ciorciari is a senior legal advisor to the documentation center of Cambodia helping bring to justice perpetrators of atrocities committed over 30 years ago by members of the Khmer Rouge regime.  And Carl Simon investigates lethal infectious diseases like drug resistant staph infections that target the most vulnerable patients in hospitals, sexually transmitted diseases like HIV/AIDS and avian malaria, which has wiped out many of Hawaii's indigenous birds.  And his transformational research identifies factors that are most responsible for fueling the spread of those dire infections so that policymakers can better target their response.  I am so proud of our terrific professional staff as well; a team that keeps the education, the research, the public service and engagement missions of the school moving forward.  We couldn't do it without all of them.  And at this time I would like to ask all of the faculty and staff of the Ford School who are hear with us today if they would please stand.  We'd love to recognize them.  Please all of our faculty and staff.
[ Applause ]
Thank all of you, each and every one for all that you do for the Ford School.  And now for the accomplishments of tonight's graduates.  What have they learned during their time here and what have they already given back to us?  Well let me start with out newest PhD graduates.  Emily Beam, Robert Garlick, Susan Godlonton and Daniel Murphy, all of whom earned a doctorate in public policy and economics and LeFleur Stevens who has earned a doctorate in public policy and political science. Well later you will hear their dissertation titles, and from them you will get a sense of just how wide ranging and important their research has been.  I'd like to focus on their really impressive job market success.  Emily Beam will be a visiting Professor of Economics at the National University of Singapore.  Robert Garlick is currently a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the World Bank Development Research Group and will join Duke University in the fall of 2014 as an Assistance Professor of Economics.  Currently a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the International Food Policy Research Institute, Susan Godlonton will be an Assistant Professor of Economics at Williams College.  Dan Murphy will start in the fall as Assistant Professor with the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia and LeFleur Stevens will join Princeton University as an Assistant Professor of Political Science in the fall.  We're so proud of each and every one of them as well.  Congratulations.
[ Applause ]
We have 97 students earning a Master's degree tonight.  The Ford School's rigorous MPP and MPA curriculum the students the skills to collect, analyze, evaluate and present information about a wide range of public concerns.  We encourage our students to take seminars that involve real world policy consulting and we require that our MPP students apply what they learn in a classroom doing a summer internship.  Our graduate students are incredibly diverse.  They speak 20 different languages inhaled from 18 countries.  They're also an athletic group.  They made the Ford School very proud.  We might be a small school but we brought home the championship Stevenson Cup from the campus intramural league this year, so congratulations for that.  
[ Silence ]
This group is also one of our most proactive and community minded groups to date.  And they developed a new student led course based on the TV drama "The Wire."  They reinvigorated two really wonderful student groups, the Domestic Policy Corps and Women and Gender in Public Policy.  And most recently they planned and organized a three mile solidarity run through campus after the events in Boston.  Many members of the class have already finalized their immediate employment plans despite what as many of you know is an extremely challenging federal hiring climate.  To the parents in the room, please except my personal reassurances that we will continue to work with and offer support to our graduates and all of them will find work in city, state or federal governments, in the private sector, in think tanks, NGOs in the U.S. or abroad.  
[ Applause ]
There are 55 students graduating today with a Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy.  And they've received much more than a typical undergraduate education.  We sometimes call it the liberal arts degree on steroids.  In small classes with some of the University of Michigan's top faculty our BA curriculum trains students to think critically and across disciplines to understand policy challenges and work to develop solutions.  Our BA students are curious, hardworking and very engaged. The group boasts seven Phi Beta Kappas and they are the ones who are wearing the gold cords tonight as well as 20 Angel scholars.  And as you heard today in the big house the inaugural winner of the Raoul Wallenberg award Zach Patrone [assumed spelling].  
[ Applause ]
The students truly are leaders and best across a wide variety of campus activities including athletics, publications, politics and so much more.  The BA and MPP graduating classes presented the school with generous parting gifts totaling nearly 5000 dollars to find opportunities for future classes.  Their gift speaks volumes about their belief in the value of a Ford School education and the importance of making those experiences possible for others.  But we know that our graduates did not arrive at their accomplishments alone.  We're also joined by some 700 family members and friends tonight.  And I know that all of our graduates really value the love and support that you have provided to them over the years.  So, graduates I'd like to give you the opportunity to thank your family and friends, both those that are here with us today and also all of those who are only able to be here in spirit.  Thank you to all of our family and friends.
[ Applause ]
Graduates, on behalf of the Ford School I say thank you for your investment in our community.  It has been a pleasure to work with you and to get to know you.  I know that many of you may have mixed feelings about what today represents.  You've achieved so very much,  but you'll miss the many joys of life in Ann Arbor and at the Ford School.  You'll miss your friends and your classmates, of course, and the holiday skits and Dominics sweeping up the competition at the broom ball championships.  But despite all that you'll miss today, it's also a day that is really truly full of promise.  Promise of new work, new cities, new friends and new challenges.  Branch Rickey, baseball hall of famer and UM alumnist forever changed our national pastime by signing Jackie Robinson to the Brooklyn Dodgers once said, and I quote, "If things don't come easy, there's no premium on effort.  There should be joy in the chase and zest in the pursuit."  Well you know that there will be times when things won't come easy, especially in your chosen profession, the universe of public policy.  But appreciate the getting there.  Remember run towards the challenge and give to the world what you have given to us at the Ford School; your engagement, your intelligence, your compassion and your unwavering commitment to fostering community.  And whenever you're in town please remember that you can walk through those doors on State and Hill just to say hello, to tell us what you're engaged with, now that you will always have a home here in Ann Arbor.  We are so proud of you and best wishes to the classes of 2013 and go Blue.
[ Applause ]
And now it is my great pleasure to introduce our 2013 commencement speaker the Honorable Mr. Paul O'Neill.  Mr. O'Neill served as the 72nd United States Secretary of the Treasury.  Mr. O'Neill was a colleague of President Ford's.  He joined the White House Office of Management and Budget in 1967 and served as a Deputy Director of OMB during the Ford Administration from 1974 to 1977.  He went on to tremendous success in the private sector as well.  He was Chairman and CEO of ALCOA until his retirement in 2000 as well as the Chairman of the Rand Corporation.  He's engaged in a number of philanthropic and community service endeavors in his hometown of Pittsburgh, including initiatives that are aimed at improving healthcare quality and patient safety.  He's been a really good friend to the Ford School as well and was one of the key leaders who helped us in building Weill Hall.  Mr. O'Neill has a Master's in public administration from our sister school at Indiana University and so he's deeply familiar with the kind of preparation that our students have received.  We are so honored to have him here with us and very proud to introduce him to deliver our 2013 commencement address.  Please join me in welcoming Mr. O'Neill.
[ Applause ]
>> Thank you Dean Collins.  The Dean was good enough to invite me to come here and I was grateful for the opportunity because while I've had many opportunities since my days in the Ford Administration to reflect on those days and to be interviewed at places like the Miller Center for the Study of the Presidency at the University of Virginia about those days and be on the record in a lot of ways.  I really look forward to the opportunity to tell you something about what's in my heart about Gerald R. Ford.  So, faculty, parents, spouses, children, graduates, it's so great to see you.  So, I want to give you a really important piece of advice.  If you don't remember anything else I say I hope you remember this.  Whatever else you do in your life budget time to have fun.  So, one other thing I learned in giving commencement addresses the only sure applause line is one that says, I'm going to be brief, and I am.  It's my hope that in your time in here you've come to know something about the namesake of your school.  My own experience with President Ford began when he was a House Minority Leader and then Vice President and then President and then through his post-Presidential years.  I want to tie my own memories of working with President Ford to the principles he lived by, which I commend to you as guideposts for your own lives.  President Ford was a lifelong student.  I commend that to you and he lived by the motto, be prepared.  On the micro level I remember his calling me in wanting to know the local economic consequences of placement of off ramps from interstate highways, what kind of businesses would be attracted, how many jobs would be created, what would happen to property values and you would be surprised to know he was particularly interested in off ramps in Michigan.  From the macro level he was a member of the House of Appropriations Committee for 23 of 25 years he was in the Congress.  And he became a leading expert about all matters that run through the Federal Fiscal Policy.  He was a student of the substance, not just the numbers.  And he was particularly knowledgeable about matters regarding defense and national security.  When he became the President he saw the budget as his instrument for shaping and expressing priorities.  He believed the budget reflected, revealed priorities not smarmy stuff people say about say about things, but the hard facts of how we allocate resources to or not to the many thousands of competing demands in our lives.  During his 29 months in office he spent hundreds of hours personally deciding what levels of financial support should be requested for everything in the budget.  I spent those hours sitting at the right corner of his desk with the sunlight streaming in through his shoulder when it wasn't moonlight sharing facts and analysis as he made his decisions.  Others were there from time to time.  Vice President Rockefeller, Jim Cannon, Carla Hills, to name a few.  The President puffed on his pipe.  It was still okay to do that then.  He quieted Liberty, his wonderful dog with his right hand while he peppered us with questions.  Having been in the government for some time before I had the pleasure to serve as the Deputy Director under him, I was a student of Presidents and budgets and I knew that the last President to personally present his budget to the media was President Truman.  So as we completed the preparation of the budget in December of 1975 I recommended to President Ford that he present his budget to the media and answer their questions in an open-ended format.  So in January of 1976 the media, hundreds, literally hundreds of reporters assembled in the large auditorium at the State Department and the President answered their every question for more than an hour and a half.  He dazzled them with a mastery of detailed facts that he knew.  He was prepared.  It was interesting when we were assembled on this stage, the President was at the far left end of the stage and arrayed across the stage were all of the cabinets and secretaries and leaders of agencies and a few people like me at the far end of the stage.  And the President got up and he said something I remember got a pretty good laugh.  He, after introducing the key facts about that, the budget presentation, he said and all of these people here are even more expert than I am about all of these things and I may call on some of them to answer your questions.  But I want you all to understand, including them, that I may choose to add or subtract from what they tell you, in good humor and people liked it a lot.  You know I remember, I was saying this yesterday in one of the events we had to illustrate how much the President knew about his own budget.  I think it was the 28th of December of 1975 and we had an early morning meeting, about seven o'clock in the morning in the Roosevelt Room across from the Oval Office.  And when the meeting broke up the President motioned to me and said, stay behind Paul.  So, I said okay and he said I've been thinking about the decisions that I've made and I know it's really late in the budget process and if you can't do this you should tell me honestly.  In those days you can't imagine this.  We didn't have Excel sheets.  We didn't have computers.  So when we put together a budget that the budget document and the appendix and all the supporting documents had thousands of pages, an unbelievable number of numbers in them and so if we changed one number when we got to December 28th, it caused changes in 4500 numbers because of the way the budget is assembled and the numbers feed into each other until you get to the final number for the total of the budget.  So, activities go up through departments and agencies and activities and all the rest of that and into all the crosscutting tables.  So, he said if you can't do this, just tell me.  So, he said this is what I want to do.  I've been thinking about it and the decision I made for the budget for the Foundation for National Arts and Humanities was to provide or request 195 million dollars for the Arts and Humanities in this budget.  And I, if you can I want to raise it to 200 million dollars so I can be the first President to recommend 200 million dollars for this important subject.  So, I didn't know how we were going to do it, but I said, "Of course, Mr. President.  We'll get it done."  And we did, but you know I hope it conveys to you how much he cared about what he did in every way, about everything and how much mastery he had of the details of how we allocate resources in our society.  Parenthetically, I have to tell you this.  President Ford would have been appalled at the too frequent conversations that occur these days when people argue about what the level of defense spending should be as a percentage of GDP.  He knew in his time how many people he thought we needed by service, in uniform, how many ships, how many aircraft, by types and capabilities.
For him defense spending as a percent of GDP was a consequence of need, not some artifice of a macro fiscal policy judgments.  President Ford was guided by a maxim do the right thing.  When I say that for many of you, you may immediately think about the Nixon pardon, which only after about 30 or 40 years it became a popular sentiment that it was, in fact, the right thing.  But I want to offer you two other examples that at the time were what I call against the tide.  So imagine this, 10 days after taking office he issued a proclamation for conditional amnesty for draft evaders saying this, "Reconciliation calls for an act of mercy to bind the nation's wounds and to heal the scars of divisiveness.  That was a courageous thing.  It was not a popular sentiment.  And then in April of 1975 he announced the resettlement of a 130,000 refugees from Vietnam.  He said this, "To do less would have added moral shame to humiliation."  And as he made the announcement he called me in and told me, Paul this needs to be done flawlessly because there's a strong sentiment in the country not to do it.  But it's the right thing to do and I don't want to give any ammunition to the critics."  So he was an empowering President and he said do it flawlessly and do whatever you need to do.  And so I assembled the heads of all the departments and agencies that needed to be involved in this including a representative from the Defense Department who was a young general.  And they were in my office, in the old executive office building and I was saying to them, this is what the President wants to have done.  And we need to reopen what had been a military camp during the second war in Fort [inaudible] Arkansas and Indian Gap, Pennsylvania and a number of other places up in the country.  And when I was finished telling them what we needed to do.  The general said to me well I presumed that you were going to say this to us and so I had a conversation with the secretary before I came over.  And the secretary said to tell you we can't, we at the military cannot be involved in this.  It will deplete our readiness to do our primary mission.  And I said, "You know, that's very interesting.  So, right here where I can reach it is my telephone and when I pick it up I have a direct line that connects me to the White House.  And I'm going to pick it up and put the President on and let him tell you."  And he looked at me and he said, that won't be necessary.  You know I didn't, it was really unusual to have anyone challenge an order that I suggested to them came from the President and it was often I had to invoke the President.  People were good about saying, okay we'll do what the President wants us to do.  But I tell you what, I did it with absolute certainty that the President would say, General this is the Commander in Chief, just do what Mr. O'Neill told you.  He was that kind of a friend.  Finally, I want to urge on you the adoption of President Ford's personal qualities.  In all of my experience with him I never saw him diminish another human being by his act or word.  He was an uplifter in matters big and small.  When my wife was invited to attend events, musicals and speeches and other events, he would hold her hand and tell her how much he appreciated my work for him.  At Christmastime he would call our home to wish us happy holidays.  The last weekend of his presidency he told me to take my family to Camp David as a final thanks.  That's a memory my wife and four children will never forget.  So, to properly carry forward the legacy of Gerald R. Ford you need to remember and practice only a few ideas.  The first idea is be prepared.  I think you've been privileged to be here where you understand the idea of be prepared.  Second, do the right thing.  There is no job title, no amount of money that's worth the sacrifice of principle.  And above all else, remember these words.  I'll tell you the long version and then the short.  The longer version is on my honor I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country.  If it's too much for you, in all you do in life remember those three words, on my honor.  Thank you and Godspeed.
[ Applause ]
>> Thank you very much.  At this time I am delighted to welcome members of the Amazing Blue to the stage.  Amazing Blue is the University of Michigan's oldest coed acapella ensemble and they will perform two classics from the Michigan, University of Michigan songbook.  Amazing Blue.
[ Applause ]
[ Moving around ]
[ Singing ]
[ Applause ]
[ Silence ]
[ Singing ]
[ Applause ]
>> Thank you very much.  Each year the Ford School's graduating students are asked to elect people to play key roles at commencement.  In particular one faculty member is chosen to speak to the classes.  Both sets of graduating classes chose a representative student speaker as well.  As the faculty speaker the classes of 2013 have elected Professor Carl Simon.  Carl is a professor of mathematics, economics, complex systems and public policy and he directs our science technology and public policy program.  He was also the founding director of the University of Michigan's Center for the Study of Complex Systems.  Carl in 2012 received a Rackham Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award for his longtime commitment both to research and to teaching.  Carl has taught calculus to many of our graduates and as you know that is no easy subject.  It is really a tribute to Carl's popularity and standing among the students that and perhaps despite his course they chose him to deliver the faculty address.  And so I am delighted to invite him now to speak on behalf of our faculty; Carl.  
[ Applause ]
[ Adjusting mic]
>> Thank you class of 2013 for this honor and this opportunity.  As Dean Collins said, it's a day of joy mixed with a little sadness.  Joy for the opportunity to take your credentials, your knowledge, your skills to make a difference in our world or at least maybe to take the next step in making that difference and maybe sadness at leaving your fellow classmates, hopefully your fellow teachers at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.  So, in the remaining hour that I have I would like to try to sum up [laughter] for you and for me, but especially for your family members just what is it that is so special about the Ford School.  I get this opportunity often.  I'm on three or four faculty high rank search committees and I'm often asked the question, why come to the University of Michigan and why especially, to that Ford School of Public Policy.  Just what makes UM and FSPP such a special place?  Well, I've thought about this and so I have some suggestions.  For UM I think it's pretty straightforward.  There are four, four.  Smart, engaging and creative faculty. [laughter] Smart, engaging and creative students.  And I've taught and I'm actually somewhat serious about this.  I've taught at a number of schools and it really, there's really a difference teaching here and it's pretty exciting.  The other part, however, there are a number of schools that have those characteristics, but there's a characteristic that only the University of Michigan has and that's thin walls; you feel it in the winter I know.  It's the top down encouragement of cross disciplinary research, the realization that there's no problem out there that can be solved only within one discipline.  And the fourth item is the incredible cultural heritage we have that includes the music, the theater, the dance that comes through this room and also Hill Auditorium down the street.  Those are my answers and I think, I think they hold water.  What about the Ford School?  Why the Ford School of Public Policy?  There I also have thought about it and I have four or five deeply felt reasons why I think we are special and that you made the right choice and I hope you agree.  One is as the Dean suggested, we're a combination of a professional school and a social science discipline.  So we, we talk about how to get policy done and why and how to analyze.  I think that's important.  But even beyond that, as the Dean also suggested, I think we are the most quantitative public policy school in the country and that gives an impressive toolbox of solving problems.  You don't just pull down a software solution.  You people actually have been taught and have thought about how to look at and solve and analyze a problem and the world knows this.  And I think that this will make a big difference in your careers.  The third reason is the student community.  It's truly a community, a really diverse community, but a community and I think that's important and I tell everybody that.  You have no idea how easier it makes my job knowing that you're there helping teach each other, answering each other's questions, helping me.  And that's a-- it makes this place special.  The fourth is this group over here to my left.  I-- this is my family.  I love them.  You know I-- we brainstorm with each other.  We listen to each other.  We write papers with each other.  We actually spend our free time with each other.  I've been to baseball games with Barry Rabe.  I've eaten dinner at Bob Axelrod's house.  I played poker this week with John Chamberlin and Mel Levitsky and Alan Deardorff and sometimes Paul Courant and Yazir Henry.  Next week Courant and Chamberlin are going fishing and when they come back I hope I'm going bird watching with Chamberlin. [laughter] And just a couple weeks ago we hosted a wine party.  It was Sandy and Sheldon Danziger and Mary Corcoran.  And David Thatcher and Paul Courant and John Chamberlin and I at the home of the Dean for a group of public policy students.  This camaraderie I think makes a difference and this sort of hints at the fifth.  And that is these communities are not separate.  We've thought about joining them in keeping the-- to one large so that the whole is far bigger than the sum of its parts.  So I think, so I love this place.  And it's you know I thank the faculty and the staff, the students.  I have a couple other offices, but this is my home.  So, now I'm going to get a little nostalgic.  How did this arise?  How did this community of incredibly interesting, creative people come about?  So, I've done a little work.  I've talked to John Chamberlin about this.  We are about to celebrate our 100th anniversary and our 50th as an Institute of Public Policy Studies and the answer is simple.  It started that way, okay.  In the late 60s Pat Crecine who's origins like Secretary O'Neill's are-- is the dull origins are actually at Pittsburg at CMU was charged with building a charter for the institute of public policy and he thought of all the things that I've talked about and how to make them happen.  I came about 10 or 12 years later and I found the dream team both in terms of faculty and in terms of students.  So there were political scientists and the amazing thing is you know most of them are still here, okay. You know I've been to many places where the turnover of faculty is great.  In the school public policy we enjoy it and we enjoy the community so much that we are still here enjoying it.  Edie Goldenberg who later became-- there were three directors that made it special.  I think Edie Goldenberg, Paul Courant and John Chamberlin took their turns.  They're all still here and enjoying it and directing.  We have a few people left, Bob Putnam left to become Dean of this Kennedy School out East.  You know some people-- at the center of all this, however, is someone who can't be here because he passed away a few years ago, our dear friend, Ned Gramlich.  Ned was the Director when I came.  He was Director most of the time I was here.  He was the first Dean of the School of Public Policy.  He left to become a member of the Federal Reserve Board with Allen Greenspan and also like our distinguished speaker disagreed quite a bit with the-- with his boss.  And, in fact, you know tried to warn him unsuccessfully about the coming housing crisis.  After his term Ned came back also to be a Provost but he was such the spirit of glue that held this together.  What about the students? Well Pat Crecine thought of this from the start.  You'll be glad to Dean Collins they actually brought a keg of beer every Friday to the student lounge to start building this community.  It might be a little harder these days and then there were students.  In 1980 one of the wildest students was young kid named Jeff Mecke Mason [assumed spelling].  This Mecke Mason character wore earrings and pins and mohawk hair and did everything to be wild.  In particular, he wrote a parody of the school newspaper, which was then called the IPPS Pips.  He wrote the IPPS Rips.  It was full of sarcasm, satire and some friendly and not so friendly insults of the-- of the faculty and you know what we couldn't wait until it came out to see if we made the IPPS Rips.  And I still have my complete collection.  For example, Ned Gramlich who once accidentally kicked the bucket in teaching was portrayed in the IPPS Rips always with a bucket as one of his shoes.  Jeff, by the way, turned out to be another typical IPPS graduate.  He went and got a PhD in economics from MIT, came back to teach at the University of Michigan and now still wearing the same clothes is a Dean of our School of Information.  What-- another sort of really bonding incident was the holiday skit.  And I remember my first one.  I portrayed Trey's first predecessor who was bald and I actually had to wear a swimming cap to cover my-- a women's swimming cap to cover my bald head to be part of this skit.  But there were wild things like Professor Larry Moore was a great banjo player playing his favorite song, Talking Program Evaluation Blues.  And Larry and one of the best named public policy students Win Cash Dollar [assumed spelling] used to sing a song whose chorus went, sitting in the back row working on my macro. [Laughter] Win went on to be a cofounder of the Capital Steps, another IPPS ripoff.  So you see the wonderful spirit that's the essence of the Ford School the spirit that still thrives.  Oh I want to mention part of the hard work is going to keep that spirit going.  We've been lucky to have Deans Blank and Collins who have really understood that and nourished it.  And there have been two faculty members I want to single out, Elena Delbanco, the writing instructor who helped all of you who has just retired and Sheldon Danziger, who came not long after the events I've described.  He is a self-proclaimed apostate economist. Sheldon's off to head the Russell Sage Foundation. We're going to miss him deeply.  Anyway this is the spirit that has nurtured us.  I hope it'll nurture you.  Continue to embrace this spirit, cuddle with it, to brag about it to others.  And most important, most important, don't forget to start your day with algebraic aerobics.  Should we show them how.  Come on, up, up, up, up.  Ready X squared minus X squared X cubed minus X cubed X squared, go blue. 
[ Applause ]
>> Algebraic aerobics, thank you Carl.  The undergraduate class of 2013 has elected Eli Day to speak on their behalf.  Eli's focus area [applause] at the Ford School has been global poverty and economic growth.  He spent last winter semester studying abroad at the American University in Cairo where he volunteered to teach English to refugees from Sudan.  He has served a number of roles with Congressman Hanson Clark's office from fundraising and volunteer mobilization to policy advisor and liaison with the business community.  In June of 2011 he was selected by the Detroit City Council to participate in a young American's round table discussion with officials from the Obama Administration.  Eli it is a great pleasure to welcome you to the podium.
[ Applause ]
>> Thank you Dean Collins for the introduction, Ford School faculty staff and community and, of course, the family and friends, may of whom are present and to my fellow graduates.  I'm deeply grateful to you all for trusting me with these five minutes as I do my best to capture the diversity and feeling that this moment carries, particularly as the feeling begins to settle in that life is leading somewhere and that policy may mean more than the free sandwiches given to us at orientation, righteous as they were.  But today we begin to live policy and confront the consequences of its legacy.  And so I think it's important that we begin by acknowledging the indigenous populations whose land we gather on today.  We must provide that affirmation, one because we don't do so enough and two, because these populations where the target is victims and most importantly survivors of policy, a legacy that we inherit.  Similarly I'd be remiss not to acknowledge a childhood friend whom I ran into not long ago.  We've kept in touch intermittently throughout the years, but had been interrupted by his on again off again incarceration.  A friend whose anger was used not as a tool for understanding the consequences of mild maldistributed resources or even a lived reality within that context, but as a justification for his continued restraint and silencing.  A friend whose mother's concerns about her son were referred to our school security before any administrator a policy.  As we got on with the business of catching up and reliving memories past, he told me he was proud of me for my accomplishments for distance traveled.  He told me he had only dreamed of college and the type of access I had grown to take advantage of.  The tragedy of his story is not in this isolation but its frequency.  His absence and the absence of countless others is only amplified by the seats that remain in this auditorium.  They serve as a clarification that the extension of the privileges that we enjoy to those who have only dreamed of them does not threaten our position but better positions all of us who are interested in getting this thing right.  This moment is as much about them as it is about us.  And it is with this dual consciousness in mind that I give my remarks today. The consciousness that says we can simultaneously celebrate the proud legacy inherit while also making allowances for our grievances with that legacy.  In the same way that we can embrace the accumulated wisdom of past generations, while also holding it to scrutiny.  The two do not have to be incompatible.  And, in fact, I propose that they be married throughout our engagement with policy, so that while we celebrate our elite education we also resist its trappings of training leaders and not always thinkers, holders of power but not its critics, that we can work to alleviate human suffering where we may while recognizing the limits of policy.  Because while we take pride in our positions as the change makers and leaders of today and tomorrow we understand that that leadership often means stepping aside.  Creating the space for those we serve to articulate their own humanity as only they can.  And at a time when the premium is placed on the immediacy of action I hope that we have the courage and humility to admit what we don't know, which we begin by thinking our way outside of our assumptions, one solitary skeptical resistant mind at a time.  And we do understand, just when we've become most comfortable in our wisdom.  I hope we question ourselves more in that moment than at any other.  And even though many of us have shared the fear of time wasted, I hope you resist the call to action that says do it, but don't think too much.  That fear for many of us comes from the concern that the communities we serve, and indeed that some of us call home, often do not have the luxury of time and in turn we adopt that limitation as our own.  Our challenge is to confront that because we have the privilege of time we must do our best to not squander it.  To be conscious of time but take the time to think and not act, that we may learn to exercise control over what we think and the choice of how we construct meaning from experience.  To think revolutionarily and resist accusations of naivety for the promotion of an impossible agenda, resist the accusations that our idealism is informed by madness or is in fact madness itself.  That madness can inform a creative genius our forerunners would encourage us to embrace.  Embrace it as we've embraced the differences that have filled every lecture, hallway and discussion we've occupied together.  Where we've brought fundamentally different lenses and filters to what have been two years of shared experience.  I've also found a fear of difference where there should be celebration, because more often than not those differences correspond to gaps in knowledge that can be filled through shared experience.  The value of which is limitless, but should stop at the favoring of uniformity over difference.  So, at best then let our efforts transform the world.  At worst, let our best efforts change the tone of the conversation.  Let understanding guide our analysis.  Let our analysis be followed by diagnosis and our diagnosis by treatment.  And if that treatment proves misguided let us be brave enough to start over.  Graduates, it has been a pleasure to learn with you, to grow with you and to walk beside you.  It's been righteous.  Thank you all.
[ Applause ]
>> Thank you Eli.  And now we will hear from the student who was elected to speak from the master's class of 2013, Cynthia Rathinasamy.
[ Applause ]
Cynthia's coursework at the Ford School has focused on international development, human rights and gender specific policy issues.  She interned last summer with the State Department where she assisted in transition planning related to the conflicts in Syria.  While at the Ford School she has planned successful events for student organizations and she's written articles for our school magazine and for the International Policy Center.  She's also hosted debates.  She earned her undergraduate degree in Political Science from Penn State and given that Big 10 rivalry I understand that for two years now she has steadfastly refused to sing, "The Victors." [laughter] Well, fortunately for us her classmates do not hold that against her and indeed they have selected her to speak on their behalf.  Cynthia, it is an honor to invite you to the podium.
[ Applause ]
>> Thank you Dean Collins and thank you Eli.  That was an amazing reminder.  In August 2010 I decided to go to graduate school for a typical, but a noble reason, because I wasn't promoted at my job.  At the time I was frustrated.  I was unfulfilled and I wanted much more out of my career.  I saw policy school as a way to do that and also as an easy out.  But, then a funny thing happened when I came her.  Despite my utilitarian reasoning for coming to Michigan, I started to really enjoy talking about policy.  I would get riled up about policy issues and excited about discourse on the interactions between policy, policymakers, the consequences of policy, randomized controlled trials on the effects of policies, policy talks, policy webinars, round tables with policy wonks, everything policy.  However, this was a break.  It certainly was not a margarita-filled vacation to Weill Hall.  So, what time-- what does all this time and sacrifice add up to?  What was the point?  I spent a lot of time thinking about this question.  I don't have a cohesive answer, but I have a few thoughts.  First, I feel like I can finally answer the question, so what exactly is public policy without reverting to my previous can answer.  Oh, you know the study of how the government does things.  To me policy isn't just the study of what is going wrong with the world and how we need to fix it.  It is a practice of engaging a public service through empathy and learning.  It is knowing that I do not have all the answers and I never will, but that I must try to understand various points of view.  Second, I know that passion and idealism are worth having, but they're not easy to hold on to.  In the past couple of years I have found passions that I didn't know existed.  I have become a raging feminist and I know now that I want to work on gender equity issues, but I've been told that's a niche topic.  I'm interested in international development, but I've told that an American in this field is inherently paternalistic.  All of these comments have made me doubt and tainted my idealism and tempered my passion.  But then, there are times when I don't doubt.  When I hear about the gender wage gap and then when I hear about women being used as tools of combat.  At times like that I know that the path that I'm traveling is right for me, because I feel the drive to make the world a better place for women.  But, in those times when I do doubt I try to hold onto the things that keep me coming to Weill Hall each day.  The first is something that I think we can all relate to, we are all huge nerds.  And let's face it, we picked a-- we-- let's face it; we get excited about some pretty strange stuff.  And as nerds we couldn't have picked a more perfect profession.  In what other field can we effectively use quantitative and qualitative studies, happily attend wonky meetings and get really excited when Ben Bernanke comes to town.  Another thing is the recognition that my path is winding.  Last summer a higher up in D.C. gave me some advice that stayed with me.  He told me to find my lighthouse.  Granted, this advice was dispensed over a few drinks at a happy hour, but I promise it is good advice.  He asked me to think about these questions.  What lights your fire and gets you raring to go each day?  That's your lighthouse.  Even in jobs that don't seem relevant if I keep my eye on the right house in 30 years my path will make sense.  Finally, despite the struggles and the doubts, I found a passion and ideals to live by, something I lacked before I came.  I gained lifelong friends and I had some of the best conversations of my life in Weill Hall and Ann Arbor.  For me the accomplishments didn't come easily.  I want to take a few moments to say thank yous to the people who got me here.  Thank you for the Ford School staff for having patience with my questions and my doubts.  Thank you to the faculty for opening up new ideas to me and for encouraging me to push back and question their authority.  Thank you to my loved ones for your unending support and compassion.  Thank you to the BA who helped me-- helped pick me off the Weill Hall staircase after I fell up them coffee and all in my first week at Ford School.  I never forgot that kindness, but I wish I had thought to ask for you name.  Finally, thank you to you to you Fordies.  We've done some remarkable things during our time at the Ford School.  We've spoken at conferences, engaged in case competitions and made international friendships, worked on campaigns, submitted countless memos and problem sets, created organizations and started families.  We've become skilled at identifying the strange smells coming from the student lounge and figuring out just how little sleep we can get and still be productive the next day.  Now, as we prepare to leave these grounds either for employment or fun employment I know we will probably continue to have doubts.  But, there are three certainties that I am looking forward to.  First, I won't ever have to feel guilty again about choosing to watch Hulu over reading my economics textbook.  Second, I have many more opportunities as [inaudible] now that you all will be spread throughout the world and country.  And I-- and finally, this will sound cheesy, but I know that there are over 100 more Fordies out there in the world striving to make an impact.  Thank you and congratulations.  
[ Applause ]
>> Thank you Cynthia.  And now we are at the moment that all of the family and friends have been looking forward to all evening.  Our graduates are ready to come to the stage to receive official congratulations on a job so well done.  This year the names will be read by our faculty member John Ciorciari.  John is an Assistant Professor of Public Policy.  He teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on politics, political institutions, post-conflict law and transition.  John has an undergraduate and a law degree from Harvard capped by a Master's degree and a PhD in International Relations from the University of Oxford.  It is my pleasure to introduce John Ciorciari to call the names of our graduating students, John.
[ Applause ]
[ Moving around ]
>> I'd like to begin by welcoming the PhD graduates from the class of 2013.  First we have Emily Allison Beam.  She'll be hooded by Professor Rebecca Thornton and the title of her dissertation is, "Information in Labor Markets in the Philippines."
[ Inaudible background conversation ] 
[ Applause ]
Next I'd like to invite Robert Garlick who will be hooded by Professor John DiNardo.  The title of Robert's dissertation is, "Essays in Development Economics and Econometrics."
[ Applause ]
[ Laughter ]
>> Whoo.
[ Applause ]
>> Our third PhD graduate is Susan Godlonton.  Susan will also be hooded by Professor Rebecca Thornton.  The title of Susan's dissertation is, "Three Essays on Employee and Job Trainee Behavior: Experimental Evidence from Malawi."  
[ Applause ]
Next I'd like to welcome Daniel Patrick Murphy to the stage.  Daniel will be hooded by Professor Alan Deardorff.  The title of Daniel's dissertation is, "Modeling Demand in International and Macroeconomics."
[ Applause ]
[ Laughter ]
[ Applause ]
[ Inaudible background conversation ] 
[ Laughter ]
And finally I'd like to invite to the stage LeFleur Nadia Stevens.  She'll be hooded by Professor Vincent Hutchings.  The title of her dissertation is, "The Effectiveness of Implicit and Explicit Racial Appeals in a Post-Racial America."
[ Applause ]
[ Silence ]
[ Applause ]
Congratulations to all of our 2013 PhD graduates.  I'd now like to introduce to you the members of the 2013 graduating class for the degree of Masters of Public Policy and Public Administration.  First Como Auguwa [phonetic spelling].
>> Yeah.
[ Applause ] 
Haven K. Allen.
[ Applause ]
Nitta Avelos [assumed spelling]
[ Applause ]
Adam Basenti [assumed spelling]
[ Cheers ]
[ Applause ]
Puja N. Bott, Andrew Robert Bracken, Erica Brown.
[ Applause ]
Adrienne Hooper Call.
[ Applause ]
David M. Clark.
[ Applause ]
Peter W. Coats. 
[ Applause ]
Rachel Commins.
[ Applause ]
Monica Cox.
[ Applause ]
Adam Grant Dewey.
[ Applause ]
Katherine M. Ditzler.
[ Applause ]
Ali Ersowee [assumed spelling]
[ Applause ]
Voneata Lea Falcow [assumed spelling]
[ Applause ]
Alexander A. Farivar.
[ Cheers ]
[ Applause ]
Matthew Roy Filter [assumed spelling].
[ Applause ]
Kimberly Foley.
[ Applause ]
Marissa Fortuna.  Lauren Elizabeth Frolich.  Sandra Garcia.  Veronica Gonzales Stuva.  Christina Jane Hodge.  
[ Applause ]
Catherine Hall.  Christine T. Hartman.  Yuko Egashitani [assumed spelling].  Sarah E. Himes.  
[ Applause ]
Yuki Itchihara.  
[ Applause ]
Karu Eda [assumed spelling]. 
[ Applause ]
Cree Lane Jones.
[ Applause ]
Naomi Joseph.  Suneo Joy.
[ Applause ]
Dawn Lynn Kaser.  Vanessa Lynn Kargenian.  
[ Applause ]
Jeffrey L. Kessner.
[ Applause ]
Chad Kiefski.
[ Applause ]
Andrew Kim.  Mackenzie Lynn Knowling.  Jonathan Kresnoff.  Chi Shang Lee.  Samantha J. Lopez.  Satoshi Maruta.  
[ Applause ]
Nina S. Matooro.  Caroline Johnson Mehan.  Sigaharu Minakauwa [assumed spelling] 
[ Applause ]
Ksukay Misunhora [assumed spelling].  Matthew Evan Modes.  Alma Esperanza Mordono.  Sigen Sylvia Oh.  Nohito Okazoi.  Jessica Marie Opere.
[ Applause ]
Hun Bok.  
[ Applause ]
Katy Jean Perot.  
[ Applause ]
Catherine Piccard.  Jennane Romatondrun. 
[ Applause ]
Marisal Ramos.  
[ Applause ]
Cynthia Rothenasami.  
[ Applause ]
Brendan Reardon.
[ Applause ]
Andrew Ridgeway.  
[ Applause ]
Christina Tosheva Ridgeway.
[ Applause ]
Jacob Roberry. 
[ Applause ]
Brian Christopher Runyan. 
[ Applause ]
Richard Scott.  Tamika D. Shields.  Kalabi Shukla.
[ Applause ]
Belinda Searha.
[ Applause ]
Catherine Kirby Smith.  Nathaniel Smith.
[ Applause ]
Gion Sung.
[ Applause ]
Karen Colin Spangler.  
[ Applause ]
Sarah O'Brien Stevens.  Ruth Elizabeth Tayback.  
[ Applause ]
Kerayuki Tahara.  Renee Tetrick.
[ Applause ]
Zoe L. Phil.  Ingrid Schuster Thai.  
[ Applause ]
Peter Thomasulo.  
[ Applause ]
Daniel Truman.
[ Applause ]
Maharshi Vishnauv [assumed spelling].  Catherine Viaeh. 
[ Applause ]
Joshua Vermet.
[ Applause ]
Rava Virgencar [assumed spelling].
[ Applause ]
Cece Voo.
[ Applause ]
Allison N. Weaver.
[ Applause ]
Yuting Tina Way.
[ Applause ]
 Ebony Joy Wells.
[ Applause ]
Patricia Josephine Ying Chi Wong.  Jessica Whirl.  Michiyaki Yamada.
[ Applause ]
Michael Yates.
[ Applause ]
William Peter Yates.  Sokompanya Yule. 
[ Applause ]
Stephanie Zamarano.  Sarah A. Rolazarate and Ayelee Zo.
[ Applause ]
Congratulations to the MPP class of 2013.  I'd like now--
[ Applause ]
I'd like now to introduce to you the BA graduates from the Ford School for 2013 beginning with Ryan Wolf Allison.
[ Applause ]
Michael Ambler.  
[ Applause ]
Lydia Stewart Austin.  
[ Applause ]
Zachary Gordon Berksen.  
[ Applause ]
Bethany Byron.  Michael Bloom.
[ Applause ]
Bridget Day Callahan.
[ Applause ]
Monica Gabriella Sarasuela.  Holly Chwang.  Forest Cox.
[ Applause ]
Eli Day.
[ Applause ]
Rohan Krishnan Doran. 
[ Applause ]
Daniel Lee Dixon.
[ Applause ]
Jeffrey Goldstein.  Brock Grosso.
[ Applause ]
Michael Geisinger.
[ Applause ]
Dillon Handlesman.
[ Applause ]
Jennifer Lynn Hoag.  
[ Applause ]
Ryan Isico.
[ Applause ]
Michael Jacobson.  Alexander Lasoff.
[ Applause ]
Gabriel LeFleur.
[ Applause ]
Samuel Johnson Lewis.  Joseph Lichterman.
[ Applause ]
Alice McGrath.  Daniel James McCurr, Jr. 
[ Applause ]
Matthew Scott Arturo Mattea.
[ Applause ]
Jordan A. Messner.
[ Applause ]
Maryann Myers.  Evan Thornton Nickels.  Leah Willett.
[ Applause ]
Gabriel Aury Pector.
[ Applause ]
Aurio Peppermaster.
[ Applause ]
Devon Parsons.
[ Applause ]
Zachary Johnpilla Patrone.
[ Applause ]
Franklin Ryan Quinn.  Daniel Luke Revitz.  Jennifer Rohmberg.  Jennifer Nicole Rudder.
[ Applause ]
William Mattheson Sheffer.
[ Applause ]
Shelvinder Core Sira.
[ Applause ]
Andy Shaffer.
[ Applause ]
Julie Sherbill.
[ Applause ]
Lindsey Singer.  Lorig Stefanian.
[ Applause ]
Alexandra Sweeney.
Sabina Tarnufka.
[ Applause ]
Daniel Tempkin.
[ Applause ]
Caroline Titon.  
[ Applause ]
Ayesha Yoismani [assumed spelling].
[ Applause ]
Madeline Grace Wager.
[ Applause ]
Elizabeth Whileberg.
[ Applause ]
Simon A. Winnett.
[ Applause ]
Abigail Williams.
[ Applause ]
And Benjamin Zukowski.
[ Applause ]
[ Moving around ]
>> Graduates would you please stand and face your guests in the audience.  And now I would like all of the BA students at this time please if you would move your tassel on your mortar board from the right to the left.
[ Applause ]
I am so proud to introduce and present to you the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policies classes of 2013.  Congratulations graduates.
[ Applause ]
Congratulations.  Thank you.  Well at this point I would like to thank all of you for joining us here for our commencement ceremony.  I'll ask that you remain seated until the class has exited.  We have some light refreshments in the lobby and I hope that you will stay and enjoy the company and the refreshments and some photographs and I hope to greet a number of you in the lobby.  Again, thank you and congratulations to our classes of 2013.
[ Applause ]
[ Music ]