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Natalie Portman Harvard Commencement Speech 2015

Hello, Class of 2015. Voice Reading
I am so honored to be here today. Voice Reading
Dean Khurana, faculty, parents, and most especially graduating students, thank you so much for inviting me. Voice Reading
The Senior Class Committee, its genuinely one of the most exciting things Ive ever been asked to do. Voice Reading
I have to admit primarily because I cant deny it as it was leaked in the WikiLeaks release of the Sony hack, that when I was invited, I replied, and I directly quote my own email, Voice Reading
Wow! This is so nice! Im going to need some funny ghost writers. Any ideas? Voice Reading
So I have to admit that today even 12 years after graduation, Im still insecure about my own worthiness. Voice Reading
I have to remind myself today youre here for a reason. Voice Reading
Today I feel much like I did when I came to Harvard Yard as a freshman in 1999 when you guys were, to my continued shock and horror, still in kindergarten. Voice Reading
I felt like there had been some mistake that I wasnt smart enough to be in this company, and that every time I opened my mouth, I would have to prove I wasnt just a dumb actress. Voice Reading
So I start with an apology. This wont be very funny. Voice Reading
Im not a comedian. And I didnt get a ghost writer. Voice Reading
But I am here to tell you today Harvard is giving you all diplomas tomorrow. Voice Reading
You are here for a reason. Voice Reading
Sometimes your insecurities and your inexperience may lead you, too, to embrace other peoples expectations, standards, or values. Voice Reading
But you can harness that inexperience to carve out your own path, one that is free of the burden of knowing how things are supposed to be, a path that is defined by its own particular set of reasons. Voice Reading
The other day I went to an amusement park with my soon-to-be 4-year-old son. Voice Reading
And I watched him play arcade games. Voice Reading
He was incredibly focused, throwing his ball at the target. Voice Reading
Jewish mother that I am, I skipped 20 steps and was already imagining him as a major league player with what is his aim and his arm and his concentration. Voice Reading
But then I realized that when he won, he was playing to trade in his tickets for the crappy plastic toys. Voice Reading
The prize was much more exciting than the game to get it. Voice Reading
But all of these aspects were shaded by the little 10-cent plastic men with sticky stretchy blue arms that adhere to the walls. Voice Reading
That that was the prize. Voice Reading

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