Congratulations on your graduation from High School. The following is our advice to you!
We would say to you to be realistic about your expectations. Do not be disappointed if you do not become an astronaut, social workers do valuable work. Do not worry if you do not invent a lifesaving medication, perhaps you will, one day instead, give life to a baby.
All of us start with great expectations and high ideals. If you keep your ideals, the expectations will fall into place. It does not matter how high you rise in the world’s estimation as long as you do not get above yourself. All of us have entered into this world the same way, and all of us will leave it in the same way too. It is what we do with the time allocated to us that matters.
Remember that education is a privilege and privileges bring responsibilities. We do not expect you to do away with the draught in Africa, or poverty in the world, but it would good if you could help one starving family, or do your little part in preserving the world’s natural resources.
In Judaism, we say that when it is time for a person to depart this world, the best thing that can be said about that person is not the amount of money he had, or how successful his business was, or the number of cars he had, or houses, but that he had a “Shem Tov”, a good name. We ask you now to live your life counting not all of the great things you have, but, instead counting all of the great things you did to make this world a better place. Then you too shall have a “Shem Tov”.