Liberia: AMEU Commencement Speaker Inspires Graduates To ‘Never Give Up’

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Paynesville – The 19th Commencement Speaker of the African Methodist Episcopal University has inspired graduates of the institution to remain focus in their quest to explore opportunities ahead of them.


Report by Willie N. Tokpah, [email protected]


International motivational speaker Patricia Russell McCloud told the 353 graduates that they must not only talk about their vision to create a change in society but work toward it.

Speaking Wednesday at the Samuel K. Doe Sports Complex in Paynesville where the program was held, Mrs. McCloud noted that exploring future opportunities requires preparedness, adding that university education as a key factor. 

“It’s better to have a degree than to need it, and it’s better not to need it but to have it; because, you are the one we have been waiting for to make the difference and ‘Never Give Up,” she said, ecounraging the graduates to use their education to positively demonstrate leadership roles.

“Leadership is not personality but performance, leadership is not effort, it is results. A leader has to stand up to address a lot of thing, but if you sit you will not fix it.” 

She enlightened them that they are cardinal to Liberia at this time when the need for “courageous, curious, innovative and creative leaders” is of concern.

She said: “We need courageous leaders, we need curious leaders with innovation and creativity and commitment. We need those who will help and empower others without just sitting or working towards it.”

The AMEU Commencement Speaker however alerted new graduates of difficulties they will encounter along their ways but admonished them to be determined, saying, they must move fast forward by getting out of their comfort zones and shift the paradigm in becoming successful .

“You must do the things that you ought to do and be prepared to turn a stumbling block into a stepping stone for other colleagues who want opportunities,” Mrs. McCloud furthered.

She told graduates that they have completed another step of their educational sojourn and should not wait for opportunities but work toward it.

Mrs. McCloud, at the same time, is hopeful that graduates will promote justice and intelligence as well as good character by demonstrating willingness to create the necessary leadership skills that others will follow.

She told the graduates that as they walk out to explore the future, there would be time they will encounter disappointment while others will become successful, but she cautioned them not to forget AMEU.

Concluding her inspirational message, McCloud asserted, “You will be disappointed, but never give up and you will be the best of yourself.

“Be a positive version of yourself and not a secondary version of others, because it will be difficult for everybody to be the same. Therefore, never give up.” 

In a related development, the African Methodist Episcopal University has name its graduate school in honor of the Political Leader of the Alternative National Congress, Mr. Alexander Benedict Cummings.

After his honoring ceremony, Cummings told reporters that he is delighted that his services rendered to humanity over the years, especially in Liberia is being recognized.

He sees the honor from an educational institution as a motivation for further humanitarian gesture to the people of Liberia.

“The honor is not just for me but the entire family. Education is the key to sustaining and building Liberia; this is why this Foundation has focused on education.  We will continue to work with the Graduate School in order to make sure that the graduate degrees that are awarded can compete with any graduate degrees anywhere,” Cummings stated. 

Mr. Cummings at the same time promised to continue helping students of Liberia through the Alexander B. Cummings African Foundation. 

“I have a long-standing tie and good association with AMEU. I was awarded an honorary degree,” he stated and added: “The Cummings Africa Foundation (CAF) and Coca Cola are partners with them,” he said.

The ANC Political Leader disclosed how CAF and Coca Cola’s partnership with the University has led to the funding of several projects, which are visible on the campus today.

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