David Epstein

More than 800 students from Evanston Township High School walked the stage at Northwestern University’s McGaw Hall during the Class of 2016 graduation ceremony on May 22, 2016. The commencement speaker was ETHS alumnus David Epstein (‘98) who is a reporter, writer, and author of the bestseller The Sports Gene: Inside the Science of Extraordinary Athletic Performance.

A graduate of Columbia University in New York, Epstein holds master’s degrees in journalism and environmental science from the school and his science writing is widely recognized, including such topics as human genetic diversity and the causes and prevention of sudden cardiac arrest in athletes. He spoke of the importance of stories and being at the “foot of the mountain” when pursuing a path to success. “The path to the mountain is never straight. The story is never simple and linear,” he said. “I promise – today you do something special, but it’s just one page in the story of you and your story is going to change.”

“Students and young people make the stories that create the world,” Epstein added. “The stories that you tell will create the world that you live in … and now it’s time for you to emerge and start shaping your world with the stories you bring outside.” Epstein received the ETHS Distinguished Alumni Award in 2015. 

The 2016 ETHS graduation ceremony can be viewed online: http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/87225429