Photo from ABC News.

Photo from ABC News.

Barack Obama’s Farewell Address was an emotional and inspiring final message to America delivered on Jan. 10, 2017. Obama has enabled huge changes for America in the last eight years, which can qualify him as one of the most inspiring figures today. This is why we should carefully listen to his Farewell Address and act on a few of his important points as young individuals, as we move forward with Donald Trump’s inauguration today.

Obama’s words pertain to everyone regardless of their political views and opinions. As students, Obama’s speech provides guidance through its motivational, inspiring and positive direction for America’s future. There are two different words of advice Obama addresses in his speech that will allow us to enable positive change in our country.

We must talk and listen to each other. Obama tells us when we tend to confine ourselves in our own bubbles and create our own thoughts in them; we keep what we believe and what we want to hear in our own bubbles, whether or not it’s true. The point of this metaphor is not to display fear and uncertainty that we seem to have openly expressed from our bubbles to our voices over the last few years, his point is to simply communicate and listen. Obama wishes for America to grow strong by creating compromises and listening with patience to what each other has to say. Obama reminds us of the power we have when we can come together, especially as young, educated Americans, and we must demand the change we wish to see.

We must be passionate and positive. Obama encourages protecting the American lifestyle in the same passionate way as the military officials who fight for our country. He tells us our identity is something to be aware of and guard. Being passionate and positive will contribute to the change we wish to see, as he explains that if something needs fixing, become motivated and organize this change through teamwork and passion.

The young are who define the future and it’s important to understand how our actions, mindsets and hearts will shape the years to come. As students, we must believe in ourselves and in this country, and use our positivity and drive to shape the future – our future. As Obama said, “I’m asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about change – but in yours.”

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Lisa Daraskevich

Lisa is a Global Studies major and English (Writing) minor graduating in 2017. She is from Plymouth, MN and her hobbies include playing the violin, speaking French, walking around the lake and hanging out with friends.

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