Sarah Jessica Parker compared Harvard Law students to her own children

The actress delivered a speech at the school's 2016 Class Day ceremony.

Cambridge, MA

Sarah Jessica Parker spoke the the Harvard Law School Class of 2016 at Class Day. She encouraged the new lawyers to go out and not be afraid to fail.

(Jay Connor)
–Jay Connor

On Wednesday, actress Sarah Jessica Parker delivered a speech at Harvard Law School’s Class Day ceremony. Parker, who is friends with HLS Dean of Students Marcia Sells, appeared before the near-graduates to set the tone for their commencement on Thursday, pronouncing a list of nine inspirational “hopes” that she had for the students.

These near-graduates, according to SJP, had become like her own children. Parker told the audience that she spent a good deal of time mulling over her speech—and the students for whom it was written—in the months leading up to the ceremony.

“Even though we’ve just met, you have become cohabitants of my life. A great part of my waking thought and…a beautiful burden. In other words, you’ve basically become my children,” she said. “Which means I’d really love it if you’d text me back. Let me know if you’re coming home tonight.”


Her speech, she said, contained the same advice she would offer her own children, were they in the position of the 2016 HLS graduates.

“Or, [the advice] I would offer if I knew it wouldn’t elicit a certain roll of the eyes,” she continued. “Because when you’re young and just beginning, advice is experience’s boring cousin that nobody invites.”

Parker advised the students to never compromise individuality, always remain curious, and to hold onto a willingness to listen.

That willingness to listen was tested, as Parker delivered her speech on Boston’s hottest day so far this year.

Harvard Law School’s commencement ceremonies begin Thursday, May 26, at 6:45 a.m.

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