Emory Report
May 18, 2009
Volume 61, Number 31


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May 18
, 2009
Vicente Fox: Exercise your leadership every day

By Vicente Fox

Every day, we must thank life for the gifts we receive.

Like being in a university of excellence, like you have been here for four years, at Emory University. In Latin America, Africa, no more than 22 percent of kids of your age have the opportunity to be in school. What a big responsibility is upon your leaders’ shoulders . . . What a big responsibility it is to meet the challenges of today’s world . . .

You are a leader. We are all leaders. We are born leaders, each and every one of us. And that’s the best and first gift of life. But not everybody has discovered that leadership. We have to make sure that through leadership . . . through helping our neighbor, through building our community, through building our world, we will find our own joy, our own ecstasies, our own happiness. That’s the power we carry within ourselves,
so . . . exercise your leadership, every day of your life.

We need to reshape, you need to reshape, the world. To reinvent it, to bring new order and new justice, as the founding fathers of this great nation started 200 years ago.

Universities are pillars, foundations, where thought is generated, where freedom is nourished and where commitment is attained. So this is the world you are going to be in.

You have to have high, very high, aspirations. Leaders don’t go for less. Changing the world, reducing poverty, increasing education, increasing wealth to all families and all peoples in the world. Heroic aspiration is the course of a leader.

I know you have dreams, big dreams, and you are going to accomplish each and every one of them. Because you are leaders. And those dreams you have to hook on the stars, up above, high, and they will make you grow each day, to be a better person. They’ll make you feel happy in your heart, because you are working for a better world, and for others.

Life is waiting for you.

The world is waiting for you . . .

God bless you.

This is an excerpt of Vicente Fox’s Commencement address.