This student with autism gave the most inspiring graduation speech

Tanya Edwards
Sef Scott speaking at his high school graduation. (Photo: Facebook courtesy Plano Independent School District)

Sef Scott, a graduating senior at Plano Senior High School in Plano, Texas, usually doesn’t speak in public. However, he stepped up to the podium at his graduation ceremony and gave a speech that stole the show.

He started by saying, “Unexpected. That is what I want you to remember … first and foremost.”

“I would imagine that to the seniors that know who I am, that it is entirely unexpected that I would be standing here giving this speech.” Scott continued, “I have autism and a social communication disorder. … Just by my being here, speaking to all of you — me — that alone is unexpected.

“… Don’t follow someone else’s dreams. Don’t waste time on something you never wanted. Do the unexpected. It is your life that you are living, not anyone else’s. So do what fulfills you. Don’t fear the future. Don’t fear the unknown. Will it be unexpected? Yes. Yes, it will. But that does not make it wrong,” Scott told the audience.

“He knows exactly what’s going on around him, but he doesn’t engage. Something about his spectrum doesn’t allow him to have the back-and-forth like you and I are,” his mom, Vicki Scott, told local ABC affiliate WFAA News.

She also told the local news station that she was surprised he wanted to audition to speak at graduation when she asked him. “I jumped up and said yes right away,” said Sef.

He was inspired to give the speech by his brother, a brain cancer survivor who has been giving speeches to raise money for various children’s charities since 2009. 

The young man received a standing ovation for his inspiring address, and for the bravery it took to make it.

His school district shared the video on YouTube, where it’s been viewed almost 50,000 times as of this story.

Watch the video below.

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