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Taylor Swift has told students to embrace the cringe and shake off life’s hardships as she accepted an honorary degree from New York University.
The Shake It Off hitmaker was made a Doctor of Fine Arts, honoris causa, at the Yankee Stadium in the Big Apple on Wednesday and delivered a rousing speech to the packed-out venue.
"I’m 90% sure the main reason I’m here is because I have a song called 22," she joked during her near 20-minute address to the graduates of 2022.
Acknowledging that she had not had the four-year college experience, the 32-year-old said she would instead draw on what she knew.
She wore a purple graduation gown, black cap and her trademark red lipstick.
Swift then offered up a series of "life hacks" including "life can be heavy" to "learn to live alongside cringe”.
“Part of growing up and moving into new chapters of your life is about catch and release. What I mean by that is, knowing what things to keep, and what things to release,” she explained.
“You can’t carry all things, all grudges, all updates on your ex, all enviable promotions your school bully got at the hedge fund his uncle started. Decide what is yours to hold and let the rest go.
“Oftentimes the good things in your life are lighter anyway, so there’s more room for them. One toxic relationship can outweigh so many wonderful, simple joys. You get to pick what your life has time and room for. Be discerning.
“Secondly, learn to live alongside cringe. No matter how hard you try to avoid being cringe, you will look back on your life and cringe retrospectively. Cringe is unavoidable over a lifetime. Even the term ‘cringe’ might someday be deemed ‘cringe’”.
The 11-time Grammy Award-winner was first announced as the commencement speaker for NYU back in March to much excitement.
Some fans are reported to have even tried to buy tickets to the ceremony from graduating students.
Earlier this year for the first time ever, NYU’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music featured an entire course on Taylor Swift which was taught by Rolling Stone journalist Brittany Spanos.
The course, which ran for eight weeks and was fully subscribed, covered Swift’s rise to pop stardom as well as her public persona.