Day 54

Day 54: The End of the Beginning

Bailey Weigel 2015, Blog, Featured

“It’s easy now for this to feel like the beginning of the end, but soon we will realize that it’s only just the end of the beginning.”

Thursday was a night that had been circled on everyone’s calendars for a while – the night of the MSBA Commencement Celebration. For weeks, we’d all been hyping commencement up to be one of the greatest nights of the summer, and it was hard to believe that it had finally arrived. My emotions were definitely running high by the time I walked into the ceremony; it’s hard to put the significance of this night down into words, but I think it might help to start with a definition:

ComŸŸŸ-mence-ment

noun

  1. A ceremony in which degrees or diplomas are conferred on graduating students.

In other words, party time. For the ceremony, the MSBA staff planned a private event for us at a restaurant in Union Square. The gathering was a massive celebration for the Class of 2015, complete with our internship supervisors, mentors, some MSBA alumni, and even many of the speakers we heard from this summer. Up to this point, we had only been exposed to many of these people in professional settings, so it was really nice to get to know some of them on a more personal level. Above all, it was great to be able to enjoy the night with my fellow classmates.

The peak of the ceremony came with the presenting of the diplomas. The members of the class were called up on stage one-by-one as Lorne read a list of spot-on superlatives – mostly inside jokes from the summer that had us all in stitches. This was all followed up with a video slideshow that really tugged at the heartstrings. I stood there and watched as the summer replayed right in front of my eyes, and I couldn’t help but be sad that it was all coming to an end. I was overcome with the thought that this commencement ceremony was essentially the beginning of the end – only one Friday Field Trip left, and then it would all be over.

At this point it’s important to note that “commencement” has a second definition:

ComŸmenceŸment

noun

  1. A beginning.

All 25 of us have said it at some point: I don’t want this summer to end. In two short months, we went to places that we never even dreamt of going, we networked with the best and brightest in the industry, and most importantly we developed some of the strongest friendships we will ever have. It’s hard to imagine this all coming to a close, but it’s important to remember this: if we were content with living in this summer forever, then we would have missed the point of MSBA completely. The truth is, MSBA isn’t really about the 8 weeks of the program – it’s about the lifetime that follows. The program has given us the tools to be successful beyond our wildest dreams, and the best part is that we’ve each got 24 new friends in our corners cheering us on. I know I’ll carry these lessons and people with me for the rest of my life.

It’s easy now for this to feel like the beginning of the end, but soon we will realize that it’s only just the end of the beginning.