The address given at the University of West Terrier’s commencement ceremonies on June 1 has drawn mixed reviews from The Park’s citizenry and criticism from some members of its political community.
“His message was not in line with my own hopes for The Park’s future.” — Chief Archon Emeritus George Irving Nathan Gallagher Newt
In the speech, which has been dubbed by its critics as the “Best Dam speech of 2013,” Beaver implored the UWT graduates to look beyond innovation to excellence, itself.
“If you cannot produce something new, something unique, something that has never been produced before…if that is not something of which you are capable, don’t stop, don’t give up. Instead, strive to do the absolute best job that any Animal has ever done. Teach the lesson best, sing the song best, cook the best meal, build the best dam,” he said.
Beaver, who is managing partner of Overeager Beaver Architects, was tipped to be the 2013 speaker after his company won the Park Dwelling Design Award this year. A source close to members of the University’s Commencement Advisory Committee (CAC) told The Mammalian Daily that the CAC wanted a member of The Park’s business community to address the 2013 graduating class to “broaden their ideas of post-graduation Park life.”
Some in the commencement audience, however, felt the speech did not deliver on that promise.
“That has to be one of the least inspirational speeches I’ve ever heard,” said one parent of a graduate.
Chief Archon Emeritus George Irving Nathan Gallagher Newt went further, accusing Beaver of effectively narrowing our youth’s field of vision.
“While I believe I understand his intent, I do not think that negativity is an appropriate sendoff for those who have worked so hard to receive an education,” he said.
Newt, who spearheaded a campaign to expand education at all levels in The Park, said he believes in the power of education to enable Animals “to create and to innovate and not just to imitate.”
“His [Beaver’s] message was not in line with my own hopes for The Park’s future,” he said.
For his part, Beaver says he was simply trying to emphasize the fact that “we cannot all be special, but we can do our best and be excellent at whatever we end up doing.”