Don Tocco speaks to Hillsdale stu­dents on his book “Art of the Journey.” Matthew Kendrick | Courtesy

Stu­dents from all corners of campus gathered this past Monday to hear from author, busi­nessman, and bene­factor Don Tocco.


Stu­dents from every club on campus were encouraged to attend Tocco’s talk with the incentive of funding for their orga­ni­zation based on the amount of members present. Before entering the Searle Center for the speech at 7 p.m., the Student Activ­ities Board started checking in every student at 6:30 p.m. to give every club and orga­ni­zation credit for their par­tic­i­pation.


“His gen­erosity is over­whelming and cre­ative,” senior Dugan Delp said. “I admire the way he donates directly to the student orga­ni­za­tions of Hillsdale College, and that is greatly appre­ciated by us stu­dents.”


Tocco, founder of national mar­keting company Tocco & Asso­ciates, spoke on what he con­siders to be essential in achieving business and per­sonal success. These values are expressed in his book “Art of the Journey.” He turned these over­ar­ching values into what he calls the “five pillars of success”: having a burning desire for change, per­sonal goals and objec­tives, faith in oneself and in God, deter­mi­nation, and coura­geous action — or coura­geous “action, action, action,” as he got the audience to chant.


Tocco also stressed the necessity of having a plan.


“Where are you gonna be in the next 10 years?” Tocco asked. “Exactly where you plan to be.”


In addition to his moti­va­tional words, Tocco’s pre­sen­tation fea­tured some of his original paintings and poetry.


Nearing the end of his pre­sen­tation, Tocco said all seniors were welcome to take a copy of his book on their way out to help them as they embark on their post-graduate life. For the freshmen, he had a pam­phlet to prepare them for the rest of their time at Hillsdale.


“Don Tocco is an incredibly engaging and enter­taining speaker,” Delp said. “He is one-of-a-kind man whose success speaks for itself. His lead­ership is an example to all Hillsdale stu­dents. We are very lucky to be asso­ciated with such a dis­tin­guished and ener­getic man — an hon­orary Charger indeed.”


Although Tocco speaks at many dif­ferent col­leges and uni­ver­sities around the United States, he said Hillsdale is his favorite and that he looks forward to coming each year.


“I look forward to the Don Tocco speech every year,” junior Katie Zelenak said. “I always like what he has to say to ‘his favorite stu­dents,’ and it’s so cool that he donates money to the clubs for just being there.”

  • Jen­nifer Melfi

    what a clown

    • Alexan­derYp­si­lantis

      What a gra­cious comment. Did you per­chance attend the speech, or is your com­mentary just more of what we’ve come to expect from you?

      • Jen­nifer Melfi

        I was forced to attend many of these when i was a student about a decade ago. Try to ask about the details of his business sometime… you will notice they are quite sparse. The guy is as flimsy as they come, but he still is invited to large auto-union events, even though they are outside of his states industry… maybe do some research before slob­bering all over hillsdale and this guy.

        • Alexan­derYp­si­lantis

          He donates funds to Hillsdale College, for that reason alone he is entitled to the COURTESY of hearing what he has to say.

          90% of what you post here is antag­o­nistic to Hillsdale College, why is that? Con­stant neg­a­tivity is tiresome, frankly.

          • Jen­nifer Melfi

            I post because the college has been failing in their mission. As an alumnus, I still love the place and am aware of where they miss the mark in order to enrich spe­cific per­sonnel within the admin­is­tration.

            100% of what you post is mindless drivel sup­porting the college. Most would assume that you are some sort of bot.

          • Alexan­derYp­si­lantis

            It’s not mindless drivel simply because you can’t under­stand it. I tend to deal in pos­i­tives, that’s probably dif­ficult for you to com­prehend.

            Cynics are a dime a dozen and most of them aren’t worth lis­tening to. As Stephen Colbert once said, “Cyn­icism mas­querades as wisdom, but it is the far­thest thing from it. Because cynics don’t learn any­thing. Because cyn­icism is a self-imposed blindness, a rejection of the world because we are afraid it will hurt us or dis­ap­point us.”

          • Jen­nifer Melfi

            If it is all from the same useless stand­point it is drivel. Which is what any wise man would say after reading your pointless cheer­leading . Quote what you want, after reading the facts, I guar­antee Colbert would be on my side.

          • Alexan­derYp­si­lantis

            You would know all about being ‘from the same useless stand­point’ because all your scrib­blings reflect your same neg­ative view­point. I’ve yet to see you post one pos­itive comment about any­thing having to do with Hillsdale College.

            Another quote that fits per­fectly into this duo­logue: ‘While you can’t control someone else’s neg­ative behavior, you can control how long you par­tic­ipate in it.’.

            Class is dis­missed.

          • Jen­nifer Melfi


            this one was from the last issue of the year. Very easy to find a pos­itive comment. Maybe you are only looking for the neg­ative?

          • Alexan­derYp­si­lantis

            A fly speck amongst the pepper. Your posts are 95% neg­ative, don’t insult my intel­li­gence by arguing oth­erwise.

          • Jen­nifer Melfi

            actually wrote two more pos­i­tives today.. Now… it usually goes against your POV, so probably hard for you to see the pos­itive aspect