Harvard Class Day Speaker: We All Need To Come Out

Reina Gattuso, Harvard College's Class Day Orator, implored graduates at the Ivy League school during a graduation ceremony Wednesday to "come out" about things they fear may hold them back.

"It is hard to be out about the things that have held us back when everyone around us is soaring," said Gattuso, a member of Harvard's Class of 2015.

Gattuso told students to come out about what may make them feel vulnerable, which could be that they feel like they aren't the "correct" gender or race, or about their own self doubts.

"If we are going to use the power we feel every time we tell someone where we go to school to make the world a better place, we need to come out," Gattuso declared.

Gattuso said during her Class Day speech that she came out as bisexual to her family on the same day President Barack Obama came out in support of same-sex marriage rights in 2012. After that, her father supported her and she began writing a biweekly column in the Harvard Crimson student newspaper about sexuality.

"What will you come out about?" she asked. It might be coming out to ask for help when they hit a roadblock on a project or about things that make you uncomfortable at work, she explained.

"I hope we have the courage to do it," she told her classmates, because when they do, "We validate the dignity of everyone."

"Come out with your entire weird, wonderful being," Gattuso continued. "Come out for that nerdy kid whose life you are about change."

Ethan Loewi, another 2015 Class Day speaker, added a similar sentiment in his remarks, telling his fellow graduates it's a good thing if they "struggle with tough existential questions."

"Don't repress your doubt, confront it," Loewi said.

Watch Reina Gattuso's speech in the video above.