Today marks a new chapter in our lives. The story is unknown from this point on. We are the writers, the authors of our own stories.

Among us will be great leaders: pharmacists, electricians, teachers and numerous more. With that being said, Amanda and I have developed a couple of tips for ourselves and the rest of the graduates. We all have goals, dreams, hopes and ambitions.

All of us will fail. We will try again and fail again.

Regardless, failure teaches us more than success.

Consequently, achieving a goal after failing so many times makes it that much better. Failing teaches refinement and tenacity; failures show us what we can do better, instead of success where we learn nothing.

With that being said, Nathaniel and I implore the Class of 2017 to fail. Fail as much as possible. Failure is not failure; failure is success.

In the words of a great Jedi, “Do or do not, there is no try.”

This makes me think back to my habits in high school. Many times I tried to write my five-page essays before the day before it was due, but I didn’t do it. In fact, I was just fooling myself telling myself that I would try to write my essays earlier when I knew full well that I wouldn’t do them until it was literally the day that they were due.

With this in mind, Amanda and I entreat the graduates not to “try.”

Just do it.

We cannot change the past or the present. We can only hope to mold the future into what we hope for. Seek to fulfill your dreams and aspirations, but remember to fail and do but do not try. Graduates, as we look forward to our lives that are to come, remember that you control your own story.