Title of honoured guest (If applicable) Ladies and Gentlemen or alumni,
Great institutions and traditions are made up of many things. They did not always exist. They were founded, created and nurtured. There were foundations laid and built upon. Yet their halls and classrooms would be empty were it not for the people who have studied and learned inside them.
As each year lapses and another class graduates they do not simply disappear into the world and leave nothing but shadows. They accumulate, not just as rolls on a dusty ledger or even a computer data base. They exist as real, vibrant and practising medical practitioners. They, like you, go out into the world to make their mark, live their lives and spread their wings. They have their failures and they have successes and their ups and downs. All of these things contribute to who they are.
Today you our class of (name year) come together and bring all of these things with you. As delighted as you are to see each other, it reminds us who we once were and how far we have come.
It allows us to share again not just the years you studied and shared together but to rediscover all that has happened to you since. This is our tradition and our story, our history if you like, that weaves us all together.
Today there will be much recollection of memories. There will be mingling and catching up. There will be remarking on how things have changed in the field of medicine. The world and in particular your field has changed enormously. Yet, we are still the same as we have always been, perhaps a little bit fatter or maybe with greyer hair. The link that joined us, though, is still the same. As we share stories and experiences, we learn about each others professional, as well as our personal lives.
Notwithstanding the very serious professionals we have all become, we want this time to be one of fun and rediscovery. The people who surround you are those who shared with you some of the most exciting and important days and experiences of your lives. Today, both past and future meet in this spot. Together with your fellow graduates you can appreciate that you were never alone.
Today and in such wonderful company you can appreciate how well you have done. Above all, you can begin to appreciate the significance and the importance of the steps that you took here all those years ago.
Have fun, enjoy and reminisce. Laugh, share and treasure. Above all, celebrate who you are and where you have come from. You are united in a great tradition, but also in a great discipline and a wonderful and worthy profession.
Ladies and gentlemen please join me in a toast to Medicine and what it means in our lives.