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For the class of 2020, this has been a year like no other. You had a great start, with everyone full of enthusiasm and hope, and then a finish you will never forget.

Here at NCRL, we recognize your hard work and excitement for the future . To commemorate this we have compiled some recommended reads and inspiring commencement speeches for graduates that are available now on our online resources Overdrive and Hoopla. We’ve also included links below to videos of their speeches.

Commencement Speeches

Very Good Lives: The Fringe Benefits of Failure and the Importance of Imagination by JK Rowling (Overdrive). Watch her commencement speech at Harvard University here.

Make Your Bed: Little Things that Can Change Your Life and Maybe the World by Admiral H. McRaven (Overdrive). Watch his speech at the University of Texas-Austen here.

Congratulations, By the Way: Some Thoughts on Kindness by George Saunders (Overdrive). Watch his commencement speech at The College of Arts and Sciences here.

Assume the Worst: The Graduation Speech You’ll Never Hear by Carl Hiaasen (Overdrive)

If This Isn’t Nice, What Is? by Kurt Vonnegut (Hoopla)

What Now? by Ann Patchett (Hoopla)

More Inspiration

Oh, the places You’ll Go by Dr. Suess (Overdrive)

Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes (Overdrive). Watch her commencement speech at Darmouth University here.

The ABCs of Adulthood: An Alphabet of Lessons by Deborah Copaken (Overdrive)

The Road to Character by David Brooks (Overdrive)

Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed (Overdrive). Watch her commencement speech here.

Daring Greatly by Brene Brown (Overdrive)

The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg (Overdrive)

Gnorning, Gnight! Little Pep Talks for Me and You by Lin-Manuel Miranda (Overdrive). Watch his commencement speech at the University of Pennsylvania here.

The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch (Overdrive)

The Boy, The Mole, The Fox, and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy (Overdrive)

The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World by Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu (Overdrive)

Tell Me More: Stories about the 12 Hardest Things I am Learning to Say by Kelly Corrigan (Overdrive)

The Source of Self-Regard by Toni Morrison (Overdrive). Watch her speech at Wellesley College here.

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