laura-bush-16may2009-sm.ashx.jpeg Former First Lady Laura Bush, who gave the commencement address at Southern Methodist University on Saturday, May 16, told the more than 1,900 degree recipients that “you won’t waste your talent and education if you use them in service to others.”

Interrupted numerous times by applause from the crowd that packed SMU’s Moody Coliseum, she said, “As much as any generation of Americans, the Class of 2009 is tasked with resolving challenges that lie far beyond your doorstep, even far beyond America’s borders.

“Between cellphones and the Internet, you have a world of information literally at your fingertips. And because our world is so small, you can’t ignore the genocide in Darfur or the recent brutal treatment of democracy leader and Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi in Burma. You know the plight of children orphaned by AIDS in Africa.

commencement2009-05.jpg “Today begins a period of incredible liberty and adventure, a time to find your calling and to demand the most of life before life makes specific demands on you,” she said during a speech that lasted about 14 minutes.

Read more from SMU News
Watch a video of Mrs. Bush’s speech video
Read the text of Mrs. Bush’s speech

See slideshows of the weekend’s ceremonies and celebrations:

Baccalaureate slide show
Lining up for Commencement slide show
Scenes from Commencement slide show
Mrs. Bush at Commencement slide show
Celebrating after Commencement slide show