This weekend was commencement for the class of 2016. Friends, family, and professors gathered to celebrate the hard work of all of their students during the last few years.

Before they took to the stage, Cheryl Boone Isaacs gave a wonderful commencement speech, with blunt words of wisdom. While they invoked laughs from the crowd, they were also insightful, and carried meaning.

One of the best pieces of advice she imparted was warning the students that now that they had graduated, they were going to fall off of a cliff.

“But don’t worry, you will be fine,” she said. “You’ll land safely, especially if you enjoy the fall.”

Another bit of advice she tried to impart onto the crowd was WYAO: work your ass off. She was positive that anyone who did so had potential to be the next Kathryn Bigelow or James Cameron…or even Justin Simien!

She ended with a quote from her favorite philosopher, her own mother, which was probably the most invaluable of the day: “Get a job.”

Also joining to celebrate the student’s success was Chapman University President Jim Doti. This ceremony was to be the last one ever attended by Doti, and the students cheered him on by chanting his name. You could see that he was very touched.

Commencement Clips Reel 2016 from Dodge College on Vimeo.

After the speeches were done, 261 undergraduate and 71 graduate names were called, and the students walked across the stage to receive their degrees. Dodge had one of the largest graduating classes this year, and every name called invoked cheering and whistling from the crowd and fellow classmates.

The night ended with One Last Splash, a commencement party held back at Marion Knott Studios. The beach theme was a hit, with Stage A turned into a drive-in theater, Stage B into a oceanside bar, and the parking lot filled with boardwalk games.

As the night wore down, students said their farewells to friends, professors, and to Dodge itself.

Best of luck to the class of 2016, and congratulations! We know you will go on to do great things!