David Ortiz Receives Honorary Degree

By Chloe Leshner

CLeshner@ABC6.com
Twitter: CLeshnerABC6

PROVIDENCE — Red Sox legend David Ortiz has received an honorary degree from the New England Institute of Technology, giving the commencement speech this afternoon.

Certainly an exciting day for graduates made even better with the chance to hear Big Papi speak. Now Dr. Ortiz, he leaves graduates with valuable words of advice.

The three time World Series champion is used to stepping up and having the attention of the crowd.

"Wicked awesome,” David Ortiz says of addressing the New England Institute of Technology class of 2017.

He focused more on the game of life, relating to students.

"You might think we are different but we really aren’t. We both figured out where we come from and how hard it is to get to where we’re at today,” he says.

Stressing the need to block out negativity.

“Life is not based on how many times you fail. Life is not based on the people who tell you you can’t. Life is based on what you feel you are capable of doing,” he says.

Ortiz adds the most important thing these students have done is making the sacrifice to put time into getting an education. Thoughts congressman Jim Langevin echoes.

"You let no obstacle stand in your way. You persevered, you pushed through and here you are today as graduates,” says Langevin.

And students aren’t the only ones walking across the stage. Big Papi received an honorary Doctorate Degree, students calling Ortiz an inspiration for the next chapter in their own lives.

"He came from a different country and I came from a different country so I had to go through obstacles. I could resemble what he was trying to say so it was very touching to me," says graduate Claude Medina.

Ortiz also talked about how important having a support system is, saying as a kid he thought his whole life would be about baseball. But that he is thankful his parents stressed getting a good education.