Judge Judy gives powerful advice in tear-jerking commencement speech

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Judge Judy Gives Powerful Advice in Tear-Jerking Commencement Speech
Shiprock High School isn't the kind of court that Judge Judy Sheindlin usually presides over, but she ruled nonetheless.

The host of Judge Judy delivered a nearly-20 minute commencement speech at the New Mexico high school's graduation, sharing personal advice on how to succeed after students receive their diplomas.

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"Number one -- and I want you to emblaze this on your brain -- you only have one chance to make a first impression," Judge Judy stressed to students.

Her Honor also stressed the importance of hard work.

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"A combination of tenacity and luck brought me here today," the 72-year-old judge continued. "I was an unremarkable student with passable looks and a direct personality. Nothing in my early childhood suggested to anyone -- except maybe my father -- that one day I would be standing here and be known simply as Judge Judy."

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Judge Judy gives powerful advice in tear-jerking commencement speech
LOS ANGELES - APRIL 14: Judge Judy Gallery for the CBS special. Judge Judy Sheindlin stars in a one-hour primetime special that will include new cases and takes a look at how the Judge transitioned from New York Family Court Judge to 'Judge Judy,' on JUDGE JUDY PRIMETIME, Tuesday, May 20 (8:00 PM-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 05: Judge Judy Sheindlin and her husband attend the 2014 Heroes Of Hollywood Luncheon at Taglyan Cultural Complex on June 5, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Valerie Macon/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - APRIL 14: Judge Judy Gallery for the CBS special. Court will be in session when Judge Judy Sheindlin appears in a one-hour special that will showcase her unique ability to act as a true moral compass and her uncanny ability to ferret out the truth, on JUDGE JUDY PRIMETIME, Tuesday, May 20 (8:00 PM-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - NOVEMBER 13: Judge Judy Sheindlin (R) and her husband Jerry Sheindlin arrive at the 55th Annual Women's Guild Cedars-Sinai Anniversary Gala at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on November 13, 2012 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Amanda Edwards/WireImage)
Judge Judy Sheindlin (right) and husband during Judge Judy Sheindlin Sighting in New York City - June 9, 2007 in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Marcel Thomas/FilmMagic)
Judge Judy Sheindlin and husband Judge Jerry Sheindlin (Photo by Robin Platzer/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 05: Judge Judy Sheindlin attends the 2014 Heroes Of Hollywood Luncheon at Taglyan Cultural Complex on June 5, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Valerie Macon/Getty Images)
(AUSTRALIA & NEW ZEALAND OUT)  John Shakespeare cartoon/ illo/ illustration/ toon/ artwork jeff kennet as judge judy, brought to you by coles   cbd thurs Jeff Kennett .jpg (Photo by Fairfax Media via Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 05: Judge Judy Sheindlin attends the 2014 Heroes Of Hollywood Luncheon at Taglyan Cultural Complex on June 5, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Valerie Macon/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 05: Judge Judy Sheindlin attends the 2014 Heroes Of Hollywood Luncheon at Taglyan Cultural Complex on June 5, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Valerie Macon/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - APRIL 14: Judge Judy Gallery for the CBS special. Look for classic Judyisms as Judge Judy Sheindlin brings her wit and no-nonsense style of justice in a one-hour primetime special, on JUDGE JUDY PRIMETIME, Tuesday, May 20 (8:00 PM-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - APRIL 14: Judge Judy Gallery for the CBS special. Court will be in session when Judge Judy Sheindlin appears in a one-hour special that will showcase her unique ability to act as a true moral compass and her uncanny ability to ferret out the truth, on JUDGE JUDY PRIMETIME, Tuesday, May 20 (8:00 PM-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 18: Judge Judy is seen outside 'The Today Show'on September 18, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Raymond Hall/FilmMagic)
Los Angeles, UNITED STATES: Judge Judy Sheindlin (R), star of the US television court reality show 'Judge Judy' arrives with an unidentified guest for at the world premier of 'The Prestige,' at El Capitan Theater in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles, California, 17 October 2006. AFP PHOTO / Robyn BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - JANUARY 23: Judge Judy Sheindlin gives kiss of approval to son Adam Levy, 38, after the republican tossed his hat into the Putnam County race for district attorney. Levy's equally proud stepdad, ex-Bronx State Supreme Court Justice Gerald Sheindlin, looks on. (Photo by Howard Earl Simmons/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 07: Judge Judy attends the Joan Rivers memorial service at Temple Emanu-El on September 7, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Kris Connor/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - JUNE 05: Judge Judy Sheindlin attends the 2014 Heroes Of Hollywood Luncheon at Taglyan Cultural Complex on June 5, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Valerie Macon/Getty Images)
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So, how did this school get lucky enough to hear Judge Judy sage advice? Her appearance was made possible because of a Facebook contest, which 18-year-old Alexus Uentille won after submitting an essay that greatly moved the daytime TV host, prompting her to make the long trek from her Connecticut home.

"Quite frankly I was hoping that we would find some school closer and more geographically suitable to where I live," Judge Judy told ET. "But then I started to go through the letters, and the letter from Alexus was compelling. She said so many movies are made here because they use that wonderful shiprock. So many people come and use the land, but so few of the people that come -- the celebrities that come -- stayed and spoke to the kids about how to realize their dreams and be successful."

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One line from Alexus' moving essay read, "It's time that we as Navajo youth get the encouragement that we deserve."

Judge Judy certainly left the 117 graduates with a word of encouragement that will likely stay with them for the rest of their lives.

"Never let anyone or anything define your value or limit your dream," she said.

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