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Hardy Inspires Graduates with Candid Commencement Speech at Middle Tennessee State University. Chats Meeting Wallen & Prioritizing Self Care

Country music artist and Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) alum, Hardy, returned to his alma mater to deliver a heartfelt commencement speech that left a lasting impact on graduates and attendees alike.

Via Hardy's Instagram

Addressing the class of 2024, Hardy shared personal anecdotes, valuable life lessons, and words of encouragement drawn from his own experiences in the music industry and beyond."First and foremost, congratulations to each and every one of you. You did it! No more tests, no more homework, no more all-nighters—unless, of course, you're hitting Broadway every now and then," Hardy began, eliciting laughter from the audience as he reminisced about his own college days.

Reflecting on his journey from MTSU student to successful artist and songwriter, Hardy emphasized the importance of seizing opportunities, no matter how small they may seem at the time. "Don't be afraid to say yes to an opportunity just because you don't think you will see an immediate result," he advised. "You never know where your successes may come from."

Drawing from his experience collaborating with fellow artist Morgan Wallen, Hardy shared a pivotal moment in his career. "About eight years ago, my publisher called me and asked if I wanted to write with this artist, someone who was brand new, someone I had never heard of before," he recounted. "Reluctantly, I said yes, and the song we wrote that day was not our best work. But he and I became friends, and two years later, I wrote my first number one song recorded by that artist."

Hardy's journey with Wallen served as a powerful testament to the transformative power of taking chances and forging meaningful connections. "There is a very big chance none of that would have ever happened if I would not have said yes to writing with my friend Morgan Wallen way back in April of 2016," he emphasized, his voice filled with gratitude for the opportunities that had shaped his career.

In a moment of vulnerability, Hardy shared a personal struggle with anxiety and self-reflection, urging graduates to prioritize their well-being. "Your life is a spectrum," he mused. "If that's the only color you're dedicating your time to, dedicating your life to, it does not matter how successful you are. There is one thing that you'll never truly achieve, and that is happiness."

As the ceremony drew to a close, Hardy left the graduates with a powerful message of empowerment and self-discovery. "Never be afraid to say yes, never be afraid to say no, and above all, live life to the fullest," he concluded, his words echoing through the auditorium.

Through his candidness and humility, Hardy exemplified the spirit of perseverance and resilience, inspiring a new generation of Blue Raiders to pursue their dreams with passion and determination. As the graduates embarked on their own journeys, they carried with them the wisdom and encouragement of a fellow MTSU alum who had dared to dream and found success beyond measure. You can watch the full speech below.


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