Saturday marked a new beginning for Castleton State College students. "Were all gathered here, getting fired up, having a good time," explained Castleton graduate, David Carrier.
The 500 graduates had bittersweet feelings moving on to the real world -- leaving their campus behind. "I don't know what I feel about leaving here, this has been my home," said Castleton graduate, Erica Bilodeau.
Sending them off was a familiar face at Channel 3 and Castleton State, graduate of the Class of 1995. "They asked me to find somebody who would be inspiring, entertaining and brief," explained Castleton President Dave Wolk. Vermonters welcome Darren Perron into their living rooms every night. But on this day, he addressed the Class of 2013 in person.
"I'm thrilled to be back at Castleton it's like coming home," said Perron, "I'm hoping to inspire the students and entertain the parents since they footed the bill for the last 4 years."
Perron spoke about the importance of making mistakes, learning from them, and making a difference in the world, regardless of the career path. "Success is not based on how big your paycheck is, how high your ratings are, or how many awards you made but your own total sense of self," said Perron.
And a couple more key points. "Clean up your Facebook and twitter pages and remember your boss' jokes are always funny," said Perron during his commencement speech.
Besides great advice and a handful of laughs, President Wolk says he hopes Perron's address and the Castleton experience will guide students to carry the values they learned at school into the next chapters of their lives. "The important thing is to make a difference in the college and the community then make a difference in the world," said Wolk.
Bringing back an old face to encourage the newest class of Castleton alumni.