Spring convocation: Nothing to fear but fear of not learning

(Edmonton) Joe Schlesinger is a veteran foreign correspondent of the highest order, one of Canada’s finest television journalists who is a compassionate and articulate chronicler of the human condition, both at its finest and its most depraved. Schlesinger has, for all intents and purposes, seen the best of times and the worst of times. What scares the Order of Canada recipient most, however, is the perils of not learning.

“We know all too well that formal learning, getting a good education, pays off, or rather that a lack of education all too often condemns people to unfulfilling jobs and a lower standard of living,” said Schlesinger told the 2011 class of bachelor of arts students while receiving an honorary doctor of letters degree. “But a good education by itself is, of course, not a guarantee of success. Life can throw us all sorts of curveballs, whether it’s wrong personal choices, social turmoil or economic crises.

“The greatest threat to success, though, may be success itself; the feeling that you’ve hit your stride and can now just keep on complacently coasting. And that goes not just for individuals but whole societies and countries.”

To read a full transcript of Schlesinger's convocation address, click here.

To watch the entire June 8 convocation ceremony, click here.