Commencement Advice for the Class of 2023

Editor’s Note: Cox Alumni Association Board Chair and Executive Board member Frank McGrew, BBA ’90, attended the Don Jackson Associates Luncheon for graduating BBA finance students and the Alternative Asset Management Program Reception, both held the day before May commencement. Remarks by Barry Kitt, a fellow Executive Board member and the Kitt Investing and Trading Center benefactor, struck McGrew. At McGrew’s urging and with Kitt’s permission, we share below Kitt’s “10 Suggestions for Graduates” facing a world very different from the one their parents entered when they graduated.

  1. You are about to begin your first job, not your last. Network with others and create a network of people you might find yourself working with in the future. Remain connected within the SMU and SMU Cox networks.
  2. Be the first person in the office and the last to leave—apply the same work ethic you demonstrated at SMU Cox. That will increase your odds of being noticed and appreciated. Do not work from home.
  3. Humble yourself. You will initially be the low person on the totem pole. No work assignment should be beneath you.
  4. Your career will be a long one, so be passionate about your chosen career. If you’re not feeling it, move on.
  5. Think outside the box and find an edge over the competition to increase your odds of success.
  6. Honesty and integrity are key—your reputation is your most valuable asset.
  7. Find a mentor that can help you develop your career.
  8. Take risks and have the courage to be willing to fail but be determined to succeed.
  9. Live below your means and start saving and investing immediately.
  10. Set financial goals now so that you have something specific to strive for and to measure against.

To see more Cox Commencement 2023 photos, click either arrow below.