Conan O’Brien’s Hilarious and Inspiring Commencement Speech

Comedian Conan O’Brien delivered the commencement address at Dartmouth College this year. In the 23 minute speech he cracks on the students, the faculty, the job market and, yep, Jay Leno. But he also speaks some amazing words of wisdom on chasing dreams, on how failure helps shape you and on how disappointment is a part of life. If you’re a recent graduate of high school or college, you should watch this. If you’re not, watch it anyway because it’s a great message for anyone.

A few choice quotes:

“My first job as your commencement speaker is to illustrate that life is not fair. For example, you have worked tirelessly for four years to earn the diploma you’ll be receiving this weekend, and Dartmouth is giving me the same degree for interviewing the fourth lead in Twilight. Deal with it.”

“Yes, you parents must be patient because it is indeed a grim job market out there. And one of the reasons that it’s so tough finding work is that aging baby boomers refuse to leave their jobs.. Trust me on this. Even when they promise you for five years that they are going to leave….and say it on television — I mean you can go on YouTube right now and watch the guy do it…there is no guarantee they won’t come back. Of course I’m speaking generally.”

“In 2000, I told graduates to not be afraid to fail, and I still believe that. But today I tell you that whether you fear it or not, disappointment will come. The beauty is that through disappointment you can gain clarity, and with clarity comes conviction and true originality.”

And this, folks, is why I am and will continue to be Team Coco.