LIFESTYLE

This Sikh Student's Unscripted Grad Speech Is The Realest Call To Unity

“There would be no Muslim ban, nobody would call the other person bad hombres. That is the world we have to create.”

14/06/2017 1:15 AM IST | Updated 14/06/2017 1:15 AM IST

If you need a reminder that the world is full of hopeful dreamers, look no further than Angad Singh Padda.

Padda is a recent graduate of the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business. After being chosen to represent his class as undergraduate student speaker, Padda took it upon himself to interview 70 classmates about what mattered to them the most. 

The apparently unscripted speech that resulted from these interviews comes straight from Padda’s heart. He laid out a bright, beautiful vision of a world where smart and dedicated people work hard to solve the planet’s biggest problems.

Speaking to an audience full of soon-to-be business majors, Padda encouraged his classmates not to use their education just make a profit, but to go out into the world to do good.

“We want to use our education to go beyond ourselves, to make the world a better place, we want to unify this world,” Padda said. 

YouTube / Berkeley-Haas
Angad Singh Padda speaks at the Haas School of Business's 2017 undergraduate commencement. 

The Sikh student is a native of Chandigarh, Punjab. He said he came to America hoping to learn how to solve his home state’s drug epidemic. He said he had lost two of his best friends to drug abuse. But once he arrived in America, Padda started learning about the problems that his classmates were concerned about ― things like war, poverty, climate change and hate crimes. 

Padda spoke of a village in India called Shani Shingnapur. The residents of this village refuse to construct permanent doors to their houses, believing in the goodness of their God and of their neighbors. Although some are skeptical of the claim, villagers report that Shani Shingnapur has a low rate of crime and thefts. 

Padda’s hope is that his classmates will one day help create a world just like Shani Shingnapur.

“What if all of us can use our education to create a world just like that village? You know what that world would look like?” Padda asked. “There would be no walls or borders, none. There would be no Muslim ban, nobody would call the other person bad hombres. That is the world we have to create.”

Padda knows unifying the world is a lofty dream. But that doesn’t stop this young man from believing. 

“They say that dreams are not the ones you have when you go to bed. Hell no. Dreams are the ones that don’t let you go to bed,” he said. 

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