Commencement ceremonies this spring at many colleges and universities across the country honored not only graduating students, but scientists hailing from a variety of fields. In recognition of their achievements, dozens of scientists received honorary degrees; some also offered words of advice to graduates. The speeches included the usual all-important cliches: Strive to be your best. Take risks. Seize opportunities. Retain your individuality. Learn for the sake of learning. However, several scientists also used the opportunity to voice their concerns on the current state of pressing issues such as AIDS research and public health.