BLOG: An unexpected great business weekend

By Assunta Ng

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The University of Washington’s commencement crowd at CenturyLink field. (Photo by George Liu/NWAW)

Graduations and Father’s Day celebrations illuminated Chinatown–International District businesses last weekend.

The University of Washington’s 138th commencement held at CenturyLink field brought over 40,000 people to the area. After the ceremony, Huskies wearing purple and gold crowded Uwajimaya and several restaurants in the neighborhood.

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Gowns weren’t the only outfits the graduates were wearing. (Photo by George Liu/NWAW)

Young people with graduation caps but wearing jeans and casual clothing appeared all over Chinatown. In fact, many restaurants sold most of their fresh seafood on Saturday, leaving few items for Father’s Day.

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Jon Huntsman (left) giving his keynote address. (Photo by George Liu/NWAW)

Huntsman could learn from Oprah

Jon Huntsman, a former Republican presidential candidate, has a shining resume. Besides being the youngest U.S. Ambassador to Singapore ever when he was appointed at the age of 32, he was also governor of Utah and ambassador to China before Gary Locke.

Now only 52, Huntsman has already worked for four presidents, from President Reagan to President Obama. You would think that Huntsman would be a knockout commencement speaker!

After all, he dropped out of high school to play in a rock band, and he and his wife adopted two daughters, one from India and one from China. His marvelous life experiences should make his stories compelling, and I was looking forward to his speech. But…

There was nothing inspiring or original about his speech. In fact, people were talking a lot while he spoke. Huntsman spent his speech talking about finding your passions and following your heart. Hey, I’ve heard that advice a million different times.

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Oprah Winfrey

If Huntsman does want to run again for president, he should think twice about his speech content and delivery. He wasn’t dynamic during the Republican presidential debates either.

When I complained about it to my older son, he suggested that I listen to Oprah’s Harvard commencement speech on YouTube. Oprah was awesome indeed. Huntsman can pick up a tip or two. (end)

Editor’s note: Keep a lookout for our special graduation issue next week.

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