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Commencement speech at Stevens Institute of Technology

Marques Brownlee (MKBHD), Renowned Tech YouTuber, Delivers Commencement Speech at Stevens Institute of Technology

On a sunny May afternoon, a familiar face took the stage at Stevens Institute of Technology’s (SIT) commencement ceremony.  Marques Brownlee, better known to his millions of fans as MKBHD, wasn’t there to review the latest smartphone; he was there to inspire the graduating class of 2024, delivering a commencement speech.

Brownlee, a proud alumnus of SIT with a degree in business and technology, addressed the crowd with a characteristic blend of humor, tech-savvy insights, and genuine advice. Here are some key takeaways from his powerful speech:

Tech Careers in Today’s World

“One of my favorite hard-to-believe-but-true facts,” Brownlee began, “is that many of the students graduating from Stevens in 2024 will go on to have long and successful careers in fields that haven’t even been created yet.” This resonated with the graduating class, a generation poised to navigate an ever-evolving tech landscape. Brownlee emphasized the importance of a strong foundation in core technical skills but also encouraged graduates to develop adaptability and a willingness to learn new things.

The role of humans in tech World

“Tech isn’t just about how many megapixels a camera has or how many gigahertz a processor runs at,” Brownlee asserted. He urged the graduates to consider the human impact of technology. “Think about the problems you want to solve, the experiences you want to create,” he said. “How can you use your technical expertise to make a positive difference in the world?” Whether it’s developing assistive technologies, advocating for digital inclusion, or tackling issues like climate change, Brownlee challenged the graduates to use their skills for good.

Building a Brand in the Digital Age

Brownlee, who built his YouTube channel MKBHD from his dorm room at Stevens, highlighted the importance of personal branding in today’s digital world. “Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there,” he encouraged, “even if it feels scary at first.” He shared personal anecdotes about his early struggles and emphasized the value of authenticity, consistency, and resilience in building a successful online presence.

The Importance of Community: Collaboration over Competition

While the tech world can be fiercely competitive, Brownlee emphasized the power of collaboration. “The best ideas often come from a meeting of minds,” he said. He encouraged the graduates to network, build meaningful connections with their peers, and seek out mentors who can guide them on their journeys.

Life After Graduation: More Than Just Likes and Followers

Brownlee acknowledged the pressure of living in a world obsessed with metrics and online success. He reminded the graduates that true fulfillment comes from pursuing their passions, making a difference in the world, and building meaningful relationships. “Don’t let your self-worth be defined by the number of likes you get,” he said.

A Look Back, a Look Forward: A Message for Aspiring Tech Leaders

Brownlee concluded his speech with a nostalgic nod to his own time at Stevens. “These years at SIT have shaped who I am today,” he said,  “and I know they’ve shaped you too.” He challenged the graduating class to go forth and become the leaders who will shape the future of technology. “Be bold, be innovative, and never stop learning,” he said. “The world needs your ideas, your skills, and your passion. Make it yours.”

Conclusion

Marques Brownlee’s commencement address at Stevens Institute of Technology was a powerful message that resonated deeply with the graduating class. It was a speech that went beyond the usual platitudes, offering practical advice, valuable insights, and most importantly, encouragement for a generation poised to tackle the challenges and opportunities of a rapidly evolving tech world. As the graduates embark on their careers, Brownlee’s words will undoubtedly serve as a guiding light on their journeys.

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