First lady Michelle Obama urged Virginia Tech's graduates to create new communities and continue to serve others.
She addressed more than 5,000 graduates and their relatives and friends at Lane Stadium in Blacksburg Friday.
The first lady noted Virginia Tech's resilience in the face of several incidents of campus violence, including the 2007 massacre that left 33 dead. She told graduates that they shouldn't let others define the school by the tragedy, but instead emphasize the character and success of its alumni.
She also urged the students to invent their own futures and live life on their own terms.
U.S. Sen. Mark Warner also spoke at the ceremony.
Obama also plans to speak at North Carolina A&T Saturday and at Oregon State June 17.