June 9 was a day of celebration for 33 students as they celebrated their graduation from the Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar alongside Spanish legend Rafael Nadal.
The 36-year-old, who captured a historic 14th Roland Garros title last week, presided over the ceremony. The World No. 4 gave a motivating speech to the students, while he praised their families and teachers for the support they had offered over the years.
“I know that the fashion now is immediacy and that patience is not a greatly valued virtue,” Nadal said. “When we want something, all we have to do is pick up our mobiles and make a purchase, read an article or get the information we need.
“But today I would like to remind you that the greatest goals in life are not achieved from one day to the next. They are achieved by fighting, struggling and learning when you fall down. I’m convinced that all of you will be great professionals and good people, which is the most important thing.
“But I can also tell you, through experience, that along the way you will have unexpected moments and disappointments that will make you question everything. In those moments, you must rely on your family, your loved ones and the people you trust, who will remind you what your dreams and goals were so that you can dream of them again.”
NBA star Ricky Rubio also spoke at the ceremony. The students attended the academy’s school, the American International School of Mallorca, and are the sixth cohort to graduate.
Rubio encouraged the young students to work hard and succeed in the face of adversity, joining previous year’s guests including Roger Federer and Maria Sharapova in sharing words of wisdom.
(With inputs from ATP)