Mark Ruffalo Tells Grads: 'Activist Is Not A Dirty Word'

Actor Mark Ruffalo received the Sam Rose '58 and Julie Waters Prize at Dickinson College for Global Environmental Activism at the school's commencement on Sunday. The prize includes $100,000, which Ruffalo said will go directly to Water Defense, a nonprofit dedicated to clean water access that he co-founded.

Ruffalo gave a short speech in accepting the prize where he urged graduates to fight for whatever cause they truly believe in.

"I'm here to tell you that 'activist' is not a dirty word," he said.

Ruffalo said that this generation of graduates is in a unique position with so many people having access to tools and platforms to "create the world that you can imagine." He asked graduates to dedicate work to challenging climate change, corporatization, environmental degradation and social justice issues.

"I'm asking each of you at some point or another to act up," Ruffalo said. "Be misbehaved. Buck the system. Fight for what you believe in. This is the time to do it; you’re the ones to do it."