'Stay hungry, stay foolish': 12 great graduation quotes
May 11th, 2012
03:10 PM ET

'Stay hungry, stay foolish': 12 great graduation quotes

by AJ Willingham

Wake up! Life is happening here. Right now.

Sometimes we forget that, and if wisdom truly is wasted on the young, the worst time to impart wisdom is to a bunch of exhausted twenty-somethings in rickety folding chairs trying not to scratch where that rented gown is making them itch.

Whether or not you've walked across that stage, commencement speeches are best enjoyed like fine wine: thoughtfully, and with a little age. Here are some of our favorite graduation quotes to inspire your day:

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition… Stay hungry. Stay foolish.” – Steve Jobs, Stanford University, 2005

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Filed under: Graduation • Voices
May 11th, 2012
01:35 PM ET

Shaquille O'Neal talks about education

by Tomeka Jones, CNN

(CNN) Former NBA Superstar Shaquille O'Neal says, “If Shaq can do it, you can do it.” He’s spreading this message to today's youth after recently receiving his doctorate degree in education. In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week, O'Neal sat down with CNN Student News to talk about his most inspirational teachers and his passion for education.

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Filed under: CNN Student News • Voices
May 11th, 2012
11:05 AM ET

Celebrities talk about their most influential teachers

by Sarah Springer, CNN

(CNN) During Teacher Appreciation week, the ladies of ABC shows “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Scandal” spoke a little bit about the teachers that impacted
their lives the most.

Chandra Wilson, who plays Dr. Miranda Bailey on “Grey’s Anatomy”, told CNN her favorite teacher taught her to believe in her abilities, while television writer and series creator, Shonda Rhimes, told CNN about a teacher who made her look forward to the future.

“Her name is Mrs. Hanks. She taught 5th grade,” said Rhimes. “We watched Luke and Laura’s wedding on ‘General Hospital’ in her classroom one day after school when I had to stay after school waiting for my mom to pick me up. We closed all of the blinds and watched Luke and Laura get married, which was very serious for me.”

However, it wasn’t the show that made Rhimes think about her future, it was her teacher’s youthful nature and ability to make her students care.

The best teacher I've ever known
Teacher Ross Friedman, playing the banjo and performing a dramatic Shakespearean reading in front of his class.
May 11th, 2012
06:35 AM ET

The best teacher I've ever known

Courtesy Linda StricklandBy Ashley Strickland, CNN

Editor’s note: In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week this week, we’re asking our colleagues at CNN to share their stories of teachers who have inspired them. Ashley Strickland is an associate producer at CNN.com.

In high school, I had the incomparable luck to learn from the Prince of Pertinence, the Sultan of Segue, the Allusion King, God of Softball and a Hell-of-a-Guy – altogether known as the Venerable Mr. Friedman.

From the first moment I set foot in his classroom that first day of sophomore year in high school, I knew it was something from a dream – not what most high schoolers imagine walking into second period English class.

The classroom was packed to the brim with allusions, from a handmade poster of Walt Whitman’s “O Captain! My Captain” over the doorway to little bits of parchment taped to the walls, all bearing quotes from a certain Mr. Friedman.

They said things like “All you can do is all you can do” and “Thou shalt striveth to be a hell of a guy in all facets of thy life.”  The ceiling tiles were painted with scenes from Shakespearean plays and song lyrics from the 1960s.

The tall, impressive gentleman sat at his desk, excitement catching in his eyes as he read each student passing through the door like a new book. He carried a gentle smile but a purposeful posture, and sported a shirt and tie that wouldn’t dare wrinkle.

He began by saying, “In your life, you will probably have five memorable teachers who have impacted you in some way. I am one of those teachers.”