Graduation Ceremony of Limkokwing University of Creative Technology, Gaborone

Address by Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Dr Limkokwing at Limkokwing University of Creative Technology, Gaborone
27 March 2010

Class of 2009

Distinguished guests

Ladies and Gentlemen,

May I begin by thanking each and everyone for being here to share with us this occasion, especially parents and guardians of our graduands. This is indeed a very special occasion. Many of us will carry memories of this day for a long time to come.

We are particularly honoured by the presence of His Excellency former President Dr Festus Mogae.

If was with his blessings that this University was established during his term of Presidency.

It was his encouragement that gave us the foundation upon which we built this University.

Your Excellency, Dr Mogae, I promised that we would bring the world to Botswana and Botswana to the world. You would be pleased to know that last year alone, we received more than a hundred million visitors from 190 countries to our website.

His Excellency Mr. Kennedy Jawan, the High Commissioner of Malaysia to Botswana has travelled to be here today. I thank you, Sir, for being with us constantly as we build this University.

There can be no better time or place than this for me to thank The Minister of Education & Skills Development and TEC for their continuing support and guidance.

I must also take this opportunity to express my gratitude to our Board of Industry Advisors, most of whom are with us today.

I know you have given much time and attention to our students to help prepare them for their careers. On their behalf, I thank you most sincerely.

Class of 2009, may I now extend to each and every one of you my warmest congratulations. You have no idea how proud I am of what you have achieved.

The proudest people here today must surely be the parents. You will recall the first days when your small children left on their own to start schooling, how you had to prepare their uniform, comb their hair and help them put on their shoes.

That may now seem like just yesterday. But it would have been some fifteen years or more. It has been a long journey.

I want to thank you for allowing us to share in that journey. I also want you to know that your children have worked hard to be here today. Because we have not made it easy for them, you should be so proud of them.

Class of 2009,

It is hard to believe that three years have passed us by so rapidly.

Three years ago, on the 21 March 2007, soon after we started, I spoke to welcome you. This is what I said then:

“Today I speak for the very first time before you as you begin your journey with us. 3 years from now, God willing, I shall be standing in front of you again to speak for the last time before you take leave of us on your graduation day.

To start, you will discover that you are much more talented than you have ever known yourself, you will be surprised by your own level of talent and creativity.

You will be astonished by how much you can do, how fast you can run, how high you can fly.

You will be the generation that will change the way people think, and bring about changes that will change things for the better in your country. You will become a driving force of change.

You will acquire new knowledge and cutting edge skills that will make you Botswana’s Next Generation of movers and shakers.

Nothing will make me happier than to see everyone of you succeed the way you want to succeed, to see you become the people other people would want to emulate; to see you sparkle like the precious stone that this country is famous for. Nothing will make me happier than to see you graduate.” That was said exactly three years ago.

Today, three years later, you shine before my eyes in this hall as the new gems of Botswana. You have no idea how much it means to me to see you graduate today. I am truly proud of you.

You now join the thousands of Limkokwing graduates who are making important contributions in this country and other places around the world.

Class of 2009,

This may be the last time we have gathered together in this hall. So before you move on, let me take a few moments to share with you some thoughts I have about the future.

As we know it, the future refers to the space of time that lies ahead of us. That space of time you now have ownership of. What you do with it today will determine what and where you will be tomorrow.

Every step you take will either take you closer to your dream, or move you away from it. You will do well to make the best use of every single day and every opportunity that comes your way.

The future has always been and will always be defined by people who have an unwavering sense of purpose, an unshakeable sense of accomplishment.

These are the people who would never take the easy way out. They will move mountains if mountains are getting in the way.

In pushing beyond the ordinary, they achieve extraordinary success. In doing what they do, they transform societies, and influence the way of life of millions across the world.

To say that the future will always be about change is to state the obvious.

What used to take years can now be done in a matter of days.

The size of your notebook used to be the size of this hall. Soon, it will be so tiny you can fold it into your wallet, and chances are it will be a hundred times faster.

Soon your tiny mobile phone will replace your notebook and it will be all you need to get your work done no matter where you find yourself on planet earth.

The worldwide web has already created a virtual reality that has made time, space and distance totally irrelevant.

Soon your library will not be housed in a building. It will be in your mobile phone.

Soon the internet will be home to a whole new virtual business world, one that needs no office space and recognizes absolutely no boundaries. Just imagine the possibilities, and the opportunities.

The future will always be driven by creativity and innovation. It will always be about making the impossible possible.

It will always be about doing things no one has ever done, and going to places no one has ever been.

You are all too familiar with Facebook. Every month more than 7000,000,000 photos are uploaded into Facebook, which receives 4,000,000,000 hits every month. Facebook was launched by a 20 year-old student from his dormitory in 2004.

As of 2008, Google has an index of 1,000,000,000,000 websites. Google was created in a garage by two 25 year old students, whose purpose was just to organize the world’s information and make it accessible to anyone who cares to know.

Yahoo receives 1,000,000,000,000 hits a month by people across the world searching for something on the web. It was also created by a twenty-something person.

These recent phenomenal footprints have one thing in common; they were created by very young people when they were barely out of school, and who were totally unconventional in the way they perceived things.

If they can do it, you can do it. Give yourself a purpose and then get on with it. You are already empowered with the knowledge and skills you need you succeed.

The future is anything you want it to be.

Your future is now in your hands. Use it well and you will soon be doing things that seem simply impossible today.

The footprints that you will create may not be as large as those I have mentioned, but making big footprints in this country and around the world is what I expect that you will be doing.

Class of 2009, as you move forward, you must never forget the many who have along the way given you strength and support. The people who were always there to lift you up whenever you were feeling down, to move you forward whenever you were falling behind – these are your instructors, your classmates, your close friends and especially your brothers and sisters.

It might not have crossed your mind that they would have wanted to see you succeed more than you have even thought about it yourself.

To them, you will always show kindness and gratitude.

Most of all, you will never forget the never-ending support, the never-ending patience and understanding of your parents. You know what enormous sacrifices they would have made just so you may have the secured opportunity to prepare and build your own future. But you may never know enough how much they care, and how much they love you.

Your irreplaceable parents, upon them you must forever shower love and affection.

Class of 2009, as graduates of this university, you are expected to stand tall and above the rest. You have a reputation to live up to and that I know you will. You will uphold at all times the good name of this university.

You will be exemplary citizens and you will contribute selflessly to society, to your country and the well being of humanity. You will raise yourself up to be more than you can be. You will make your parents proud.

On that note and on behalf of all of us, I bid you farewell.

May this journey that you have started with us take you to the top of your world, and may your future be one filled with accomplishments and happiness.

You know that you have our very best wishes.

It does not matter how far away you will be from us, we will always be here watching and applauding your every achievement. You will always e a part of us. This will always be your home.

May God bless you and all loved ones.