SFS held commencement ceremonies on May 19 for the class of 2007 as part of a busy few days that included Senior Convocation, Tropaia, Senior Ball, and the Baccalaureate Eucharistic Celebration. Under near-perfect weather conditions, graduates received their diplomas from Dean Robert Gallucci and listened to sobering words from commencement speaker Dr. Jessica Tuchman Mathews, President of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
Mathews described how the students would be faced with major tasks in the years ahead, learning to live in what she described as “a globalized world where sovereignty counts for less and compromise and cooperation for much more.” She traced foreign policy from the growing unilateralism of the 1990s to an embrace of imperialism after the 2000 elections, suggesting that this set of experiences would shape how the class of 2007 sees the world in the years ahead. “We are all products of the time in which we come of age professionally and intellectually,” said Mathews.
Mathews condemned the neo-conservative view that the United States is entitled to operate by a different set of rules than other nations. For her, the concept of preventive war remains illegitimate. She also challenged the notion that international cooperation is harmful to U.S. interests and that diplomacy is not a useful tool for solving problems. She argued that such views represent a fundamental and disturbing departure from America's policy tradition, listing a number of key foreign policy changes that she believes the
In her closing remarks, Mathew’s words were hopeful. She reminded students to make the most of each opportunity in the unpredictable years ahead. “Do what you love, because you will do it best,” said Mathews.