President Obama dropped some words of presidential wisdom on Barnard's class of 2012 on Monday. Chief among them was this nugget: don't listen to the media.
Obama advised graduates to persevere, and spoke about the women in his life who have inspired him. Before that though, he acknowledged the uphill battle that students face. He referenced the tough economy, and blamed the media for spreading cynicism.
"No wonder that faith in our institutions has never been lower, particularly when good news doesn't get the same kind of ratings as bad news anymore," Obama said. "Every day you receive a steady stream of sensationalism and scandal, and stories with a message that suggests change isn't possible, that you can't make a difference, that you won't be able to close that gap between life as it is and life as it should be."
Barnard announced that the president would deliver its 2012 commencement address in March. He bumped New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson, who had previously been scheduled to speak.