Graduates: Are You a Parasite or a Pollinator?

Published on October 14, 2013 by arothstein

“Are you a parasite or a pollinator?” Keynote speaker Logan Wilkes posed this question at Broadview University–Orem’s summer commencement. Eighteen graduating students thought about what they would contribute to the world once equipped with their hard-earned degrees. They were advised to become pollinators (givers), not parasites (takers).

“Every opportunity has its root in a relationship,” Wilkes, President of Utah County’s Corporate Alliance, explained. “More relationships will be built by serving those you come into contact with than will ever be built by a slick sales presentation.”

Broadview University, graduation

Logan Wilkes speaks at Broadview University–Orem’s Summer 2013 Commencement.

Wilkes also cautioned the new graduates against relationship arrogance, or the tendency to judge the value of those you meet by what they can offer you as opposed to what you can offer them.

The 200+ people in attendance at the beautiful Sleepy Ridge Golf Course also heard from two student speakers, Kelsey Neil and Ambar Herrera.

Kelsey recalled her reluctance to master one of the required skills in her veterinary technology degree program, called the “tail lift.” As Kelsey explained, “By listening to my instructors, taking deep breaths, having confidence in my abilities and just doing it, I learned how to overcome my fears in doing the tail lift. I have since learned to take many deep breaths in any situation that causes anxiety… just like I’m doing right now.”

Broadview University, graduation

Broadview University–Orem Summer 2013 Commencement

Ambar recalled the many struggles she faced to remain in school and complete her medical administrative assistant degree while juggling a full schedule of work and single-motherhood. “My two boys inspired me every day to keep moving forward in the face of many difficulties,” she said.

As per tradition, a student of the quarter is announced at every commencement ceremony. This quarter was unique in that two students earned the title: Bryce Crosby, a criminal justice graduate and former marine who served tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Sarah Willis, a medical assisting graduate with a 3.96 GPA.

The event was described by many as being one of the best commencement ceremonies they had ever attended, with its combination of inspirational speakers, excited graduates, and delicious graduation cake.

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