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Student Speaker Talks of Pride

May 20, 2013

Benjamin J. Raymond, who will receive the Master of Arts in Teaching, will give the student address at the Graduate School Commencement Convocation on May 26. Benjamin’s training in Secondary Education English included student teaching at East Greenwich High School in Rhode Island. The speaker, who was selected by the full Graduate Student Council, tells us about himself and his talk, Pride, Considered.

Where are you from and why did you come to Brown for graduate studies?

I am originally from Williamsport, PA. Before coming to Brown, I received a B.A. in English and Humanities ('10), and an M.A. in English ('12) from Villanova University.

I chose to come to Brown believing it would afford me a singular opportunity to grow as an educator, in a welcoming, remarkably unpretentious community of faculty and fellow students.

Why did you want to be the graduate student speaker at Commencement?

I stood for nomination as Commencement speaker in hopes that by expressing my thanks for all that Brown has given me, I might likewise articulate the gratitude and sense of accomplishment felt by my fellow graduates.

Why are you talking about pride?

I chose to discuss the very particular kind of pride I feel as a graduate of Brown. We often assume “pride” equivalent to “vanity,” and while I obviously agree that the vain, self-serving iteration of the word should always be avoided, I think it is right for my fellow graduates to feel a profound sense of pride in their accomplishments. I think a pride enlivened by gratitude and an eagerness to pass on our talents is something to be valued, and can motivate us to do great things, not only for ourselves, but for others.

What are your plans?

After commencement, I will begin my career in public education as an English teacher and soccer coach at Scituate High School in Scituate, Massachusetts.