There are lots of graduations this time of year. That means there are also lots of commencement speeches. When you attend a graduation ceremony, you hear some of the same things no matter who gives the speech. That is because every Graduation Speech usually includes advice, words of wisdom, what really matters in life, and how to live on purpose.


In order for a graduation speech to be effective, there is a definite format that should be followed with certain themes. First of all, the speaker should indicate his relationship or ties to the school.

That's why the school often invites someone who has a connection with the school or community in some way.

Founder and CEO of Facebook Mark Zuckerberg delivered the Commencement Address to the Class of 2017 at Harvard University this week. He shared his memories of being a student there 12 years ago before he dropped out to devote full attention to Facebook. It was the place where Facebook actually got started. He met his wife Priscilla there. Because he shared those memories with his audience, he was able to engage them because they had some things in common.

Often times the speaker is a graduate from the school. For instance, Hillary Clinton spoke at Wellesley College this week. It was her second time speaking there since she graduated from the college.

Last year, the newly crowned "Dancing with the Stars" champion Rashad Jennings spoke at Liberty University where he attended years ago. This year, President Donald Trump gave his first commencement address since he became president. He spoke there because he established ties with the college during his campaign. In fact, Trump received his first endorsement from Liberty.


After establishing a relationship with the graduates, speakers usually talk about current issues as they apply to the graduates. They are told how they will fit into the outside world and some of the challenge they will face after graduation. Within the speech, there are some words of wisdom for the graduates after they receive their diploma.

Every speaker uses the opportunity to share experience, values, and advice depending on whether it is a high school or college graduating class. An average length for a speech is about 15-30 minutes, and enthusiasm is important.

Last, and certainly not least, speakers end with a congratulatory gesture. It is a very effective way to close the speech.