Cable pioneer tuned in at BGSU PDF Print E-mail
Written by JORDAN CRAVENS Sentinel Staff Writer   
Monday, 23 December 2013 10:09
(From left) Chyloh Thokey, Jessie Foster, Korie Asner, and Melissa Kennedy, smile after the symbolic turning of the tassles during the commencement ceremony in the Stroh Center at BGSU Saturday morning. (Photos: Shane Hughes/Sentinel-Tribune)
Cable industry pioneer and two-time Bowling Green State University alumnus Robert Clasen had three nuggets of wisdom to impart on his fellow Falcons: be reflective, adapt to change and understand that excellence and integrity are not mutually exclusive.
Clasen, who earned both his bachelor's and master's degrees from BGSU, addressed graduates on Saturday during the university's 278th commencement ceremony at the Stroh Center.
"I've had quite a career, but sooner or later there comes a time to look back and see how it all happened," Clasen said.
"What I discovered is when I left BG, I was already a pretty complete package," he said. 
It was lessons he learned while in college, he said, that helped prepare him for a successful career in the media industry. His 40-year career included time as chairman and chief executive officer of Starz, LLC; president of Comcast Cable Communications; divisional president for McCaw Cellular Communications (now AT&T); as well as president of Comcast's International Division in
Robert Clasen speaks during the commencement ceremony in the Stroh Center at BGSU Saturday morning.
One of the first lessons he learned was from his BGSU professors.
"I listened and learned and, in paying attention, I followed their lead," he said.
That lesson was applicable in his media career.
"Paying attention to the controlling stakeholders, I learned quickly what was important," he said.
He also learned other skills while at BGSU like leadership, how to be a good listener, and confidence in public speaking. He also became a pro at time management as he balanced the rigors of being a student-athlete as a member of the track team.
"How complete is your skill set? It's never too soon to reflect," Clasen told the graduates.
"How do you feel about yourself now? What are your strengths? What are your weaknesses?"
Clasen also advised the graduates to adapt to change.
"Constant change requires constant evaluation on how and what you spend your time on. There are a lot of distractions."
Lastly, Clasen told the graduates to understand they can have integrity and be successful.
"Don't let the rush to succeed cost you your integrity," he said.
"Oh yeah, I hope you have fun along the way," Clasen concluded.
More than 1,000 students were awarded diplomas over the course of two graduation ceremonies on Friday and Saturday. The youngest student to receive a degree was 18, and the oldest was 66. There were 27 doctoral degrees awarded, 164 master's degrees, 778 bachelor's degrees and 73 associate's degrees.
Last Updated on Monday, 23 December 2013 10:26

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