Dean Jack Wade Nowlin, a San Angelo native and Angelo State University alumnus, delivered the commencement addresses during ASU’s fall graduation ceremonies on Saturday, December 15, 2019.
Nowlin addressed graduates during a 10 a.m. ceremony and again at a 2 p.m. ceremony. More than 650 ASU graduates were scheduled to walk the stage during the two graduation ceremonies.
Nowlin shared three quotes that he uses as advice to live by.
“No one cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.”
Nowlin began with a quote, attributed to Teddy Roosevelt, which was shared with him at his ASU graduation 27 years ago. “You need to care about people, and people need to know that you care,” Nowlin advised. He went on to share that this is the foundation of his philosophy as Dean of Texas Tech Law School—“Students come first.” Because we care about their success and about their happiness, “[e]very decision we make is designed to help [them] succeed.”
“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”
With this second piece of advice, a quote often attributed to Abraham Lincoln, Nowlin encouraged graduates to be happy for themselves, their family, their friends, their coworkers, and their neighbors. Nowlin suggested graduates follow this advice by counting their blessings and practicing gratitude, forgiveness, love, and kindness.
“Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.”
His final piece of advice, based on a quote by Winston Churchill, was to see failures as an opportunity to build a foundation for success the next time around.
He concluded with a prediction that every graduate there would go forth and do great things.