Speaking to the 1,344 incoming freshmen who filled Woolsey Hall Saturday morning, University President Richard Levin used the Freshman Address to urge the class of 2014 to “stretch themselves” by taking classes and trying extracurricular activities outside their established areas of interest, as well as making friends who do not resemble the ones they had in high school.

“Seek out friends with different histories and different interests,” Levin said. “You will find that you learn the most from the people least like you.”

Below, check out other excerpts from the speech.

  • “Surveys have shown that Yale parents are the most satisfied in the Ivy League. So, welcome to the Yale family!”
  • “Most likely, you will be overwhelmed by the more than 2,000 courses available to you. You will inevitably miss out on 98 percent of them.”
  • “With respect to science, I have two messages for you that are mirror images. First, if you are someone with an early or emerging passion for science, take the time to sample other subjects as well … Second, if you do not think yourself a ‘science type,’ don’t just fulfill the science requirement; give science a serious try.”
  • “Try at least one extracurricular activity that is brand new to you. And, by all means, do not spend all your time with your varsity teammates, or your fellow singing group members, or the others who write for the Yale Daily News.”

Click here to read the whole speech.