Tag Archives: Emmett O’Malley ’15

Convocation Address by Emmett O’Malley ’15

Photo by Matthew Cavanaugh
Photo by Matthew Cavanaugh

Welcome to convocation. This speech is divided into three sections—the three S’s if you will—Socrates, “Success,” and Summing Up.

Part One: Socrates

Since it’s the start of another academic year, it’s probably appropriate that we engage with the big Socratic question right off the bat. That is: What course of life is best? A question that Socrates directed toward Calacles, a sophist – a person not in pursuit of virtue — in Plato’s masterpiece, “The Republic.”

From my humble perspective, the answer to that existential question — What course of life is best? — is that we acknowledge the convergence between our own personal pursuits and the moral obligations that we owe to others for our privileged positions as members of the Williston community. That convergence between our personal and moral obligations is, at least for me, where the answer to the question – What course of life is best? — lies. In addition, our answer to the essential Socratic question inculcates us with — as Mr. Hill likes to remind us — purpose, passion, and integrity.

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