The person I “interviewed” was John Krasinski, an actor most commonly known as Jim from The Office. Krasinski was born in Boston, Massachusetts, and began acting in middle school as Daddy Warbucks in Annie the musical. He later went on to graduate from Brown University in 2001 and subsequently returned to give a commencement speech to the graduating class of 2019.
In the speech, Krasinski discussed the power of “lean[ing] all the way in” (Krasinski). Although he initially brings this up when talking about his time as a part of a sketch comedy group at Brown, he insists that this principle can be applied as a student, as well as in all aspects of life. Krasinski even believes that “it was without a doubt the beginning. For the next four years, I wanted to be a part of it all” (Krasinski). This philosophy led to his success not only in the classroom but also socially. In a society where students are getting more and more burnt out, it is necessary to find the drive to put energy towards education. We must lean all the way in.
Krasinski also discusses how he “failed and took more chances” (Krasinski). This is another key lesson to learn as a student. Everyone is going to fail a test or get a bad grade on an assignment at one point. It is imperative to learn from these mistakes and apply the new knowledge from one task to the next. Although, perhaps the most meaningful idea Krasinski learned as a student is finding a sense of community. What I mean by this is that Krasinski believed that his education came from his peers as well. As a student nowadays, I am confident that a good portion of my peers only sees school as a means of taking in knowledge. They forget about how school allows us to find ourselves as people. I didn’t even realize the dual nature of school until I heard this part of Krasinski’s speech. But I now understand that Krasinski is absolutely right; we must stop seeing school as boring lectures and start seeing it as a way to grow as people and make connections with others.
All of the ideas Krasinski talks about connect to Dr. Chew’s video called “Developing a Mindset for Successful Learning.” Primarily, Krasinski’s main point of leaning all the way in connects to Dr. Chew’s first principle, “your level of understanding is a direct result of how hard you prepare” (Chew). If you don’t “lean all the way in” (Krasinski) and put all your effort into preparing for class, it is difficult to succeed. Dr. Chew’s ninth principle, “improvement involves dealing with challenges, difficulty, and uncertainty” (Chew) connects to Krasinski’s belief that you have to fail and learn from these mistakes. Both ideas are paramount in being successful both in and out of the classroom.
Having read and watched Krasinski’s speech, I now have a new outlook on what it means to be a student. I plan to use Krasinski’s ideas in my learning and hope to improve my abilities as a student. I urge everyone to think about the positive impact these ideas can have on your academic self.
Chew, Steven, director. Developing a Mindset for Successful Learning. YouTube, Samford University, 25 Mar. 2015, www.youtube.com/embed/htv6eap1-_M?autoplay=1&rel=0.
“John Krasinski.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 11 Feb. 2021, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Krasinski.
Krasinski, John. “Lean all the way in.” Class of 2019 Graduation, Brown University, 25 May 2019, First Baptist Church in America, Providence, RI. Commencement Speech.