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Honorary senior congratulates his graduating “classmates”

Wait! Wait! You can’t possibly imagine that I don’t hear your whispers! And don’t think that I don’t see you longingly eyeing your suitcases. You’re leaving. Soon, you’re going to be packing up all of your things and leaving. But why? We were having so much fun! Sure, you had all of those classes that you had to attend, but that was cool, wasn’t it?

I mean, those classes had you coming up with research questions and those research questions had you coming into the library! Now that. that was cool! Every day we got to see you here, perusing the books, flipping through journals, and scrutinizing our databases. It was so much fun! We got to see you building research skills and expanding your mind! We got to follow you through academic adventures! It wasexciting and wonderful!

Now, however, you’re planning on going, leaving here. Some of you, if I have overheard your whispers correctly, are even planning on taking your degrees and not coming back! I get it, I think. I certainly understand the temptation to get a job and make some money: that’s been a goal for just about everyone, of course. It’s important to set yourself up to be able to get the things you need and even some of the things you want and it’s good that you have been able to do so. I also understand the need to get on with your life. There is so much to see and to experience and being at school limits some of that. But does it have to be all of you at once?

Sure, I’ll admit it, it’s going to be good for you to get out of here, and not just for you, but also for the communities in which you settle. Your impact on those around you is going to be great, supporting friends and neighbors and professions with your skills, knowledge, and your very beings. I truly, firmly believe that the world is going to be a better place now that you have more opportunities to participate!

The thing is I guess that I’m selfish. It was really nice having you here and I was kinda hoping that you might stay around for a while longer.

No, you’re right. It is definitely time for a change. Summer is just about here, and I do still remember that sudden wonderful feeling of freedom of not having papers, tests, and presentations hanging over my head.

There is no doubt that you have earned that feeling. I’m just not looking forward to the months ahead where you won’t be frequent library visitors.

For those of you coming back next year, we are looking forward to seeing you again. For those of you moving on, please come back to visit. And if you read a newspaper clipping of a crazy librarian running out into traffic and demanding that passing strangers ask him questions, please spare me a kind thought.

– Michael Beller,
Reference & Access Services Librarian