POTSDAM, N.Y. (WWTI) — Introducing the newest graduates of Clarkson University.

Over the weekend, Clarkson awarded nearly 800 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees to students at its 2022 commencement ceremony. This included students from 31 states, 19 countries and 59 New York State counties.

At the ceremony, the University recognized students, faculty and staff with awards.

This included Clarkson’s Institute of STEM Education Associate Professor Seema Rivera who was awarded the John W. Graham Jr. Faculty Research Award. This is a $1,500 research award that was presented to Rivera as he shows “promise in engineering, business, liberal or scientific arts.”

Clarkson University School and Art Sciences Biology Professor Tom Langen received the Distinguished Teaching Award. This was given “in recognition of the importance of superior teaching” and awarded Langen with a $1,500 prize.

Graduating Seniors Kristen A. Goebel was awarded the Levinus Clarkson Award and Autumn Hui Lennon received the Frederica Clarkson Award. Both are $1,000 prizes given to students who “demonstrate the best combination of scholarship and promise of outstanding professional achievement.”

Additionally, students, families and guests were addressed by several guest speakers.

This included Science Philanthropy Alliance President Dr. France A. Córdova, Norwegian University of Science and Technology Professor Sveinung Løset, Cleveland Clinic Former CEO and Current Executive Advisor Dr. Toby Cosgrove, M.D. and Jemison Group and BioSentient Corp. Dr. Mae C. Jemison.

“Connect with your passion, your instincts. Happiness in what you do in both your professional and personal life is more important than money,” Córdova said to the students. “Connect the dots. The most brilliant accomplishments are wonderful surprises, resulting from putting together different ideas in entirely new ways. And, connect with others. Care about others and give back in your unique way. We’re here for just a short time, make your time one of impact.”

“Be great and accept that you may not always reach your goals but you have done your very best and used your abilities. Be proud of yourself, you have succeeded in character,” Løset added.

“Failure is a great teacher. The only true failure comes when you fail to rise and try again. Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly,” Cosgrove further added. “It is how you handle your failures that will define and determine your success. Dream a grand dream; relentlessly pursue your dream, and do not fear failure.”

Jemison closed out the speeches and spoke about nature and the changing world.

“Graduation is a time of transition, it is moving from one definable phase of your life to the next, and taking your place in a greater world. But right now, the world that you are entering is undergoing not just subtle changes, but upheaval and instabilities, that may have immutable, lasting changes and consequences for untold decades to come,” She shared. “Just go outside sometimes and look up at the clouds and stars and allow yourself to wonder what they were, just as you did when you were a child. Look up at the stars and wonder how we’re connected to the universe.”

Clarkson University’s 2022 commecement was held on Saturday, May 14.