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110 graduation quotes to send off the class of 2024 in style

Celebrate graduates of every kind with this collection of memorable quips.
Throwing a cap into the clouds after graduating from university.
Offer your congratulations with these thoughtful graduation quotes.kebudfam / Getty Images stock

Graduations are among life's biggest accomplishments. They speak to hard work, dedication and success.

For the graduate, it's a day well-earned. For friends and loved ones, it's a time to let someone special know that their achievement is recognized and celebrated.

Whether it be a kindergarten, high school or college graduation, honor the grad in your life this year with a thoughtful gift, greeting card or one of these inspirational graduation quotes.

In recognition of commencements of every kind, we’ve gathered a list of the best graduation quotes to post on Instagram, send via text or jot down in a heartfelt note.

To help you find exactly the right words, we've put together a comprehensive collection of sayings from notable figures including Eleanor Roosevelt, Maya Angelou, Mahatma Gandhi, Helen Keller and other luminaries.

You'll find short quotes, funny quotes from the likes of Steve Martin, Tina Fey and Robin Williams, and time-honored quotes from the treasured Dr. Seuss book “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”

Whatever message you’re searching for to celebrate someone special, you’re sure to find it in the compilation below.

So, without any further pomp and circumstance, here are the best graduation quotes to help you say "hat's off" to the class of 2024.

Best graduation quotes

Graduation Quotes
  • “A bright future beckons. The onus is on us, through hard work, honesty and integrity, to reach for the stars.” — Nelson Mandela
  • “Your talent determines what you can do. Your motivation determines how much you are willing to do. Your attitude determines how well you do it.” — Lou Holtz
  • “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” — Norman Vincent Peale
  • “Life loves to be taken by the lapel and be told, ‘I am with you kid. Let’s go!’” Maya Angelou
Graduation Quotes
  • “Set your course by the stars, not by the lights of every passing ship.” ―?Omar N. Bradley
  • “I never dreamed about success. I worked for it.” — Estée Lauder
  • “You change the world by being yourself.” — Yoko Ono
  • “Keep your eyes on the stars, and your feet on the ground.” — Theodore Roosevelt
  • “You get whatever accomplishment you are willing to declare.” ―?Georgia O’Keeffe
Graduation Quotes
  • “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” — Eleanor Roosevelt
  • “What lies behind you and what lies in front of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside of you.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • “Let us make our future now, and let us make our dreams tomorrow’s reality.” — Malala Yousafzai
  • "Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever." — Mahatma Gandhi
  • “Success is getting what you want, happiness is wanting what you get.” ― W.P. Kinsella
Graduation Quotes
  • “It is not where you start but how high you aim that matters for success.” — Nelson Mandela
  • "The love of learning, the sequestered nooks, And all the sweet serenity of books." ― Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  • “Am I good enough? Yes, I am.” ―?Michelle Obama, “Becoming”
  • “The only impossible journey is the one you never begin.” — Tony Robbins
  • “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” — Helen Keller
Graduation Quotes
  • “When you have a dream, you’ve got to grab it and never let go.” —?Carol Burnett
  • “Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible!’” ― Audrey Hepburn
  • "I scorched the earth with my talent and I let my light shine.” — André Leon Talley
  • “There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure.” — Colin Powell
  • “I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart: I am, I am, I am.” — Sylvia Plath, “The Bell Jar”

Graduation Quotes
  • “Be the best of whatever you are.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • “Forever is composed of nows.” —?Emily Dickinson
  • “The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.” — Steve Jobs
  • “To exist is to change, to change is to mature, to mature is to go on creating oneself endlessly.” ― Henri Bergson
  • “You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us. And the world will live as one.” ― John Lennon, "Imagine"
Graduation Quotes
  • “A #2 pencil and a dream can take you anywhere.” — Joyce Meyer
  • “Passion first and everything will fall into place.” — Holly Holm
  • “You’re off to great places. Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So ... get on your way.” —?Dr. Seuss, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”
  • “The beginning is always today.” — Mary Shelley
  • “You don’t become what you want, you become what you believe.” — Oprah Winfrey
  • “You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” — A.A. Milne,?“Winnie the Pooh”

Short graduation quotes

Graduation Quotes
  • “Celebrate endings — for they precede new beginnings.” — Jonathan Lockwood Huie
  • “There are no goodbyes for us. Wherever you are, you will always be in my heart.” — Mahatma Gandhi
  • “The harder the battle, the sweeter the victory.” — Les Brown
  • “A star is a rock that never gave up on its dream to rise.” ―?Matshona Dhliwayo
  • “Success is loving life and daring to live it.” ―?Maya Angelou
Graduation Quotes
  • “Your education is a dress rehearsal for a life that is yours to lead.” — Nora Ephron
  • “Through discipline comes freedom.” — Aristotle
  • “Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.” ― Robert Collier
  • “What could we accomplish if we knew we could not fail?” — Eleanor Roosevelt
  • “Don’t be afraid to give up the good to go for the great.” ― John D. Rockefeller
Graduation Quotes
  • “Nothing is impossible. The word itself says, ‘I’m possible!’” — Audrey Hepburn
  • “Be so good they can’t ignore you.” — Steve Martin
  • “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” — Neale Donald Walsch
  • “I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.” — Mark Twain
  • “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” — Nelson Mandela
Graduation Quotes
  • “Success is not the absence of failure; it’s the persistence through failure.” — Aisha Tyler
  • “Accept no one’s definition of your life. Define yourself.” ―?Harvey Fierstein
  • “Today’s accomplishments were yesterday’s impossibilities.” — Robert H. Schuller
  • “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” ―?Mahatma Gandhi
  • “Your education has prepared you for what lies ahead.” — Conan O’Brien, 2020 Harvard commencement
Graduation Quotes
  • “What we learn with pleasure we never forget.” — Alfred Mercier
  • “The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to go beyond them into the impossible.” — Arthur C. Clarke
  • “It’s supposed to be hard.?If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it.?The hard is what makes it great.” — Jimmy Dugan, “A League of Their Own”
  • “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” — Lao Tzu
Graduation Quotes
  • “Believe you can and you’re halfway there.” ― Theodore Roosevelt
  • “Persistence is the most powerful force on earth, it can move mountains.” — Albert Einstein
  • “Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement; nothing can be done without hope and confidence.” — Helen Keller

Funny graduation quotes

  • “Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school.” — Albert Einstein
  • “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” — Ferris Bueller, “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”
  • “I look to the future because that is where I’m going to spend the rest of my life.”?—?George Burns
  • “Try not to have a good time ... This is supposed to be educational.” — Lucy Van Pelt, “Peanuts”
Graduation Quotes
  • “People don’t turn down money. It’s what separates us from the animals.” — Jerry Seinfeld
  • “When all else fails, there’s always delusion.” — Conan O’Brien
  • “Summer vacation does kind of set up an adulthood of disappointment. That first job, you’re like, ‘I have to go to work in July? What is this, Russia?’”— Jim Gaffigan, “Cinco”
  • “Adults?are?always asking?little?kids?what?they want?to be when?they?grow up because?they’re?looking?for?ideas.”? —Paula Poundstone
  • “A mind is like a parachute. It doesn’t work if it is not open.” — Frank Zappa
Graduation Quotes
  • “Do not take life too seriously — you will never get out of it alive.” — Elbert Hubbard
  • “You’re only given a little spark of madness, you mustn’t lose it.” — Robin Williams
  • “You can’t be that kid standing at the top of the water slide overthinking it. You have to go down the chute.”?—?Tina Fey
  • “All my life, I always wanted to be somebody. Now I see that I should have been more specific.” — Jane Wagner
  • “If at first you don’t succeed, then skydiving definitely isn’t for you.” — Steven Wright
  • “Never follow anyone else’s path. Unless you’re in the woods and you’re lost and you see a path; then, by all means, you should follow that path.” — Ellen Degeneres
  • “You’re still here? It’s over. Go home. Go.” — Ferris Bueller, “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”
Graduation Quotes

Inspirational graduation quotes

  • “All dreams are within reach. All you have to do is keep moving towards them.” — Viola Davis
  • “That’s a great motto for all of us — find somebody to be successful for. Raise their hopes. Rise to their needs.” — Barack Obama, Arizona State University commencement speech 2009
  • “Look back on the journey that brought you here. What moments challenged you most? When were you asked to step outside of your familiar territory in order to rise to the occasion of your potential? I want you to remember those moments because they will embolden you.” — Kerry Washington, George Washington University commencement speech 2013
Graduation Quotes
  • “Just because you don’t know what you want yet, it doesn’t mean that there’s nothing to want.” — Emily Henry, “The Love That Split the Wind”
  • “You educate a man; you educate a man. You educate a woman; you educate a generation.” — Brigham Young
  • “You’ll be on your way up! You’ll be seeing great sights! You’ll join the high fliers who soar to high heights.” — Dr. Seuss, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”
  • “Make a career of humanity. Commit yourself to the noble struggle for equal rights. You will make a better person of yourself, a greater nation of your country, and a finer world to live in.” — Martin Luther King, March for Integrated Schools
  • ?“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.” — Dr. Seuss, “Happy Birthday to You!”
Graduation Quotes
  • “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go...”?— Dr. Seuss, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”
  • “A great accomplishment shouldn’t be the end of the road, just the starting point for the next leap forward.” — Harvey Mackay
  • “If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.” — Henry David Thoreau, “Walden”
  • “It is you, the young and fearless at heart, the most diverse and educated generation in our history, who the nation is waiting to follow.” — Barack Obama, Selma Anniversary speech 2015
Graduation Quotes
  • “It’s opener, out there, in the wide, open air.” ―?Dr. Seuss,?"Oh, the Places You’ll Go!"
  • “Why fit in when you were born to stand out?” ―?Dr. Seuss
  • “Education is our passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today.” — Malcolm X
  • “Congratulations! Today is your day. You’re off to Great Places! You’re off and away!” ―?Dr. Seuss,?“Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”
  • “It is our failure to become of perceived ideal that ultimately defines us and makes us unique.” — Conan O’Brien, 2011 Dartmouth College commencement address
Graduation Quotes
  • “Ambition is the path to success. Persistence is the vehicle you arrive in.” — Bill Bradley
  • “There are two types of people who will tell you that you cannot make a difference in this world: those who are afraid to try and those who are afraid you will succeed.” — Ray Goforth
  • “All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.” — Walt Disney
  • “Becoming isn’t about arriving somewhere or achieving a certain aim. I see it instead as forward motion, a means of evolving, a way to reach continuously toward a better self. The journey doesn’t end.” — Michelle Obama, “Becoming”
  • “I am a firm believer that you don’t achieve greatness on your own. There is always someone there to lend a hand.” — Greg Louganis
Graduation Quotes

Graduation quotes inspired by song lyrics

  • “Tonight / We are young /So, let’s set the world on fire / We can burn brighter than the sun.” — Fun, “We Are Young”
  • “I’ll spread my wings and I’ll learn how to fly / I’ll do what it takes ‘til I touch the sky / And I’ll make a wish, take a chance, make a change and breakaway.” — Kelly Clarkson, “Breakaway”
  • “And I’ll be gone, gone tonight / The ground beneath my feet is open wide.” — One Direction, “Story of My Life’
Graduation Quotes
  • “You just gotta ignite the light and let it shine / Just own the night, like the Fourth of July.” — Katy Perry, “Firework”
  • “It’s something unpredictable, but in the end, it’s right / I hope you had the time of your life.” — Green Day, “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)”
  • “Ain’t about how fast I get there / Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side / It’s the climb.” — Miley Cyrus, “The Climb”
  • “I am unwritten / Can’t read my mind / I’m undefined / I’m just beginning / The pen’s in my hand / Ending unplanned.” —Natasha Bedingfield, “Unwritten”
Graduation Quotes
  • “As we go on, we remember / All the times we had together / And as our lives change / Come whatever / We will still be friends forever.” — Vitamin C, “Graduation (Friends Forever)
  • “I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance / Never settle for the path of least resistance.” — Lee Ann Womack, “I Hope You Dance”
  • “School’s out for summer / School’s out forever.” — Alice Cooper, “School’s Out”
Graduation Quotes
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