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Watch: Arianna Huffington's Commencement Address on Women and the Media

Thompson on Hollywood By Maggie Lange | Thompson on Hollywood May 26, 2013 at 11:11PM

At her commencement address at Smith College, Arianna Huffington dispensed wise words of advice--specifically regarding the subject of success and careers for women in the media. She spoke particularly well about redefining success, rather than focusing on money and power.
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Arianna Huffington
At her commencement address at Smith College, Arianna Huffington dispensed wise words of advice--specifically regarding the subject of success and careers for women in the media. She spoke particularly well about redefining success, rather than focusing on money and power.  

One of her more pithy phrases:

“Money and power by themselves are a two-legged stool — you can balance on them for a while, but eventually you’re going to topple over.”

She continues on, saying that the definition of success should be expanded to include other metrics--well-being, wisdom, and an ability to wonder. She also cheekily recommended that graduates literally sleep their way to the top--getting a full eight hours of rest every evening. (Huffington has put her money where her mouth is, and noted that the Huffington Post newsroom has two nap rooms.) 

And finally, she recommended that women do more than break through the glass ceiling:

"So please don’t settle for just breaking through glass ceilings in a broken corporate system or in a broken political system… Change it by going to the root of what’s wrong and redefining what we value and what we consider success."

This article is related to: New Media, Video


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.