Bush Tells ’87 Albion Grads: ‘Take the Dare the Future Holds’

December 3, 2018

Vice President George H. W. Bush speaks at Albion College’s 1987 Commencement.

On May 9, 1987, then Vice President George H. W. Bush spoke of the need for ethics and education in a changing world as Commencement speaker at Albion College.

Bush, who a year and a half later was elected the 41st president of the United States, died November 30 at the age of 94.

From in front of Kresge Gymnasium, Bush spoke about how America was falling behind the rest of the world in education and that changes were needed.

“Every day in this country, businesses are restructuring to meet the future,” he told graduates. “They are becoming more competitive, more responsive, more in touch with the public’s needs. Should our education system do any less to meet the needs of the future? Should it be any less sensitive to change?”

He also spoke of the importance of integrity and even took to task the administration in which he worked that “has been the victim of individuals who haven’t had the judgement or integrity to put the public’s business above their own selfish self-interest.” He added, “Greed is not a legitimate force in this society.”

He concluded his talk by telling Albion graduates, “I urge you to take the values of the past, take the opportunities of the present and then take the risk—take the dare the future holds.”

Read Vice President Bush’s complete 1987 Albion College Commencement address (PDF)

Read coverage of Bush’s visit to Albion in The New York Times