A Comparison of Two Commencement Speeches and an Education Article

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Education is knowledge obtained in order to reach one’s full potential. A human being is not in the proper sense until they are educated. Two commencement speeches, “Failure and Imagination” by J.K. Rowling and “Real Freedom?” by David Wallace, and an article titled “The 4-Stage Response to Low Student Achievement” by John Lemuel, all have several aspects of education in common and provide knowledge and inspiration about the real idea and necessity for education. In these works, they all use personal experiences, an informal tone, and provide motivation to show why education is imperative to the development and fulfilment of life. Education is not useful for monetary purposes alone.

Education is intrinsically valuable. It is more than a tool to succeed in the work force in order to receive extrinsic ends. In Wallace’s commencement speech he states, “the degree you are about to receive has actual human value instead of just a material payoff.” Education opens doors to its students. People lacking intelligence have fewer opportunities to do what they want to do. Education is self-enlightening. It allows one to become more aware of their surroundings and themselves. Education is beneficial to the individual.

Personal experiences and real-world examples are presented in all three of the works to illustrate the importance of education on a deeper level. Seven years prior to her graduation, J.K. Rowling was “jobless, a lone parent, and as poor as it is possible to be in modern day Britain, without being homeless” (Rowling par. 18). Her Harvard education did not guarantee financial security, but rather taught her how to deal with difficult situations like this. Her education allowed her to be able to learn from su...

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...er on in the speech for it will make her words more credible. The choice of tone brings clarity to their message.

The three works “Real Freedom?”, “Failure and Imagination”, and “The 4-Stage Response to Low Student Achievement” all share a common purpose. This is to inform their audience that education isn’t important because it buys expensive cars, a nice house, or a vacation to a tropical paradise. A human being cannot reach his full heights until he is educated.

Works Cited

Lemuel, John. “The 4- Stage Response to Low Student Achievement.” The Chronicle. The Chronicle of Higher Education. 1 May 2011. Web. 7 March 2014.

Rowling, J[oanne] K[athleen]. “Failure and Imagination.” Humanity.org. The Humanity Initiative. 5 June 2005. Web. 22 Feb. 2014.

Wallace, David. “Real Freedom?” Humanity.org. The Humanity Initiative. 21 May 2005. Web. 22 Feb. 2014.

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