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Denzel Washington tells college grads ‘put God first’

ROUSING SPEECH: Denzel Washington

DENZEL WASHINGTON delivered a rousing speech to black college graduates on Saturday (May 9) encouraging them to “put God first in everything you do”.

The Hollywood star told the 2015 graduating class from historically black Dillard University that “everything you think I have…everything I have is by the grace of God, understand that. It’s a gift.”

The 60-year-old actor continued by telling a story about when he was 20 years old and was flunking out of college with a 1.7 grade point average. “I hope none of you can relate”, he added which was met by roaring laughter from the 218 the graduates in Louisiana.

The Academy Award-winning actor said he was sitting at his mother's beauty parlor at the time and a woman told him that one day he would travel the world and speak to millions of people.

Washington eventually received a bachelor's degree in drama and journalism from Fordham University in New York, according to the Huffington Post.

“I've kept God in my life and it's kept me humbled,” he said.

The three other key points of advice he shared included to “fail big”, “you'll never see a U-Haul (moving vans) behind a hearse” and “say thank you in advance of what is already yours”, which were captured in a video posted to YouTube by one of the graduate's loved ones.

“Today is the beginning of the rest of your life and you only live once, so do what you feel passionate about,' Washington told the graduates.

“Take chances, professionally. Don't be afraid to fail.”

He continued: “Don't be afraid to dream big, but remember dreams without goals are just dreams and they ultimately fuel disappointment. So have dreams but have goals.

“To achieve these goals, you must apply discipline and consistency everyday. You have to work at it.”

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