Message to Graduates

By Todd Sanborn, Director of Maintenance and Grounds

Ladies and gentlemen, it is an honor and a privilege to be asked to address the Class of 2012 at the 47th annual Commencement ceremonies at Unity College.  I don’t need to pretend that I was the administration’s first choice to fill this role — award-winning environmentalist author Cynthia Barnett backed out at the last minute after learning that her honorarium was $50 and the only accommodations we could offer her was an abandoned cabin infested with rodents and mosquitoes.

But that doesn’t matter.  Truth be told, I’ve been waiting for this opportunity for 14 years, ever since I first became the Director of Maintenance and Grounds here at Unity College.

I’ve put a lot of thought into what advice I would have for a fresh crop of graduates, ready to go out and make their way in the world. I would have to say that right at the top of the list would be to stop being such fucking slobs.

I mean, this campus is not your personal garbage can.  If I had an extra dollar for every condom wrapper I’ve picked up or every glass pipe I’ve run over with those dinky old-fashioned mowers they make me use, I could retire right now.

I know you all came to Unity because you’re concerned about Mother Earth, but I guess all that goes out the window when you’re horny and high, right?

Maybe that explains why this place still hasn’t gone paperless, or why the solar panels on top of the dining hall haven’t worked since I got here.  The people in charge of this dump are busy backcombing their dreadlocks and reposting Occupy Wall Street memes on Facebook to grapple with any of that stuff.

I realize you’re all leaving, so it doesn’t matter anyways, but I had to get it off my chest, you know? Now, let’s talk about the real reason why you’re here: the future.

Maybe I never went to college myself, but I have an advanced degree from the School of Life, and I’m here to tell you that graduation is not an end, but a beginning.

For most of you, it will be the beginning of 10 years of a transient life drifting through various low-paying seasonal jobs that mooch off expiring government grants, like Field Instructor for Wilderness Fat Camp in Goathumper, Indiana. Then you’ll snap out of your idealism, realizing how great it would be to have health insurance and steady pay and maybe a vasectomy, so you’ll go back to school someplace else and get a real degree from a real college.

All the while you’ll still be getting letters from Unity, asking for donations, as if the $34,000 per year you wasted here wasn’t enough of a contribution.

Yes, the future is full of possibility, so don’t forget to take chances, appreciate every day, remember the less fortunate, and all that horseshit.  You are the Leaders of Tomorrow, and whatever.

But above all, always remember the motto of your alma mater: Unity College: Basically the University of Maine at Machias, but Triple the Cost.



  1. Rebecca says:

    Dear Todd,
    You are a total f-ing genius. Please write for the MTM Media soon so I have something intelligent to read while I start my wood stove.
    Your Fan,
    Employed.. but clearly not working right now

  2. Dear Todd,
    Careful what you say about UMM.

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