NEWPORT, R.I. – Slow down and fend off distraction, graduates were advised during Salve Regina University’s 62nd commencement on Sunday, May 20. That message took on particular relevance considering it was offered by the publisher, president and CEO of the state’s largest newspaper.
“After all, my colleagues and I are in the business of selling the topical — much of it wrapped in seeming urgency and sent with increasing speed,” Howard G. Sutton II told his listeners. “And a lot of it is interactive with readers. In other words, we can be pretty hyper-active, too.”
Sutton said that while the technological and telecommunications revolution has brought much good, he cautioned that it has brought bad as well. While we have constant access to news and information at our fingertips on our latest devices, it’s important, he said, to know that “we’re in charge.
“It’s good that we’re more connected if we want and/or need to be,” he said. “It’s bad that we’re sometimes over-connected, so much that it’s tough to think straight … Don’t demand instant responsiveness all the time from yourself and others. Let them, and yourself, think calmly.
“Let’s face it, it is tough to unplug, but it might be good for the soul.”
Prior to presenting his commencement speech, Sutton was presented with an honorary doctorate in humane letters by Salve Regina President Jane Gerety, RSM. Sister Jane then conferred 671 degrees, including 438 baccalaureate degrees, 204 master’s degrees, 26 certificates of advanced graduate studies and three doctorates,