As far as commencement speakers go, it does not get much bigger than a U.S. Senator.
Sunday, returning to the building where she earned the Democratic nomination just last year, Springfield College's class of 2013 got to hear from U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren.
"This is my first commencement address as your Senator," said Warren, as she took center stage. "I am so happy to be here."
Warren, a former law school professor, told the packed Mass Mutual Center crowd that Sunday's graduates were a step ahead of the competition.
"I have high hopes and at this time of transition and in this hard economy, you have already done something really tough," Warren stated. "You stuck it out, you pushed yourself, and you graduated. Hurrah!"
Warren's 12 minute speech focused on her family and was designed to show the graduates that anything can happen as life goes on.
"The funny thing is that I never planned to get into politics," said Warren. "If you do not believe me, try to find a political consultant who will tell you that the best way to get elected to a national office is becoming a professor or tangling with bank CEOs."
It was a message that got through to her audience.
"Leave some room in your heart for the unexpected," said Ashley Lynch, who was graduating from Springfield College with a degree in Health Science. "You think you have your plan, and you think these next five years are all planned out and ready for you."
When the speech was over, the Senator broke it down to the basics for CBS 3.
"You worked hard, you set a goal, that is how you got an education, but you have to leave a little space in your life for the things that are improbable," said Warren.
Also honored during Sunday's commencement was city resident Raymond Jordan.
Jordan and Warren each received honorary doctor of Humanics degrees from the school.
Jordan has more than 40 years of experience in both the state and federal government.
Springfield College awards their honorary degrees to individuals who personify the school's mission of educating students in spirit, mind and body for leadership in service to others.
Copyright 2013 WSHM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.