Tag: Commencement Address

‘Hidden Figures’ Inspiration Katherine Johnson Will Deliver Hampton University Commencement Address in May

NASA Mathematician Katherine Johnson (photo via essence.com)

article by Danielle Kwateng-Clark via essence.com

Hampton University is welcoming a living legend for their 147th Commencement this May. The historically Black university announced that Katherine G. Johnson, the physicist and mathematician who worked for NASA and was an inspiration behind “Hidden Figures,” would join them as their commencement speaker this year.

As an African-American woman, job options were limited —but she was eventually hired as one of several female mathematicians for the agency that would become NASA,” President Barack Obama said during her Presidential Medal of Freedom honor.

To read more, go to: Katherine Johnson Will Deliver Hampton University Commencement Address| Essence.com

U.S. Senator Kamala Harris to Deliver Howard University Commencement Address this May

U.S. Senator (D-CA) Kamala Harris (photo via thegrio.com)

article via thegrio.com

United States Senator Kamala D. Harris will be delivering the commencement address at Howard University on May 13, according to an announcement from the university.

“Throughout her trailblazing career, Senator Harris has demonstrated her commitment to youth in a variety of ways,” said Howard University President Dr. Wayne Frederick. “She is a leader in mentorship programs, has authored legislation to fight child exploitation and unashamedly shattered both racial and gender barriers. As we exclaim the necessity of Howard University’s legacy — now more than ever before — and focus our vision toward the future, I have no doubt that our graduates will find Senator Harris thought-provoking and inspiring.”

Harris, who graduated from Howard in 1986, was the first woman to serve as the Attorney General for the State of California and was the second ever African-American woman to be elected to the U.S. Senate. “Howard shaped, nurtured, and challenged me to soar on my chosen path, and I’m honored to speak to the class of 2017 to encourage them to pursue their own dreams and live up to the promise of Howard,” said Senator Harris.

To read more, go to: Sen. Kamala Harris to deliver Howard commencement address | theGrio

Political Strategist Donna Brazile to Deliver Spelman College Commencement Address on May 17

Political activist Donna Brazile  (Photo: LOUIE FAVORITE)
Political activist Donna Brazile (Photo: LOUIE FAVORITE/ajc.com)

Donna Brazile, an academic, author, syndicated columnist, television political commentator, and political strategist, has been named Commencement speaker for the Spelman College Class of 2015. Brazile, who will receive an honorary degree, will address more than 475 graduates on Sunday, May 17, 2015, at 3 p.m. at the Georgia International Convention Center.

“Donna Brazile has been a trailblazer in the political arena and a staunch advocate for human and civil rights,” said President Beverly Daniel Tatum. “We are pleased she will have an opportunity to impart words of wisdom to Spelman graduates as they begin the next phase of life’s journey, and join the ranks of Spelman alumnae who have made a choice to change the world.”

With a lifelong passion for political progress, Brazile had worked with a candidate every presidential campaign from 1976 through 2000, when she became the first African American to manage a presidential campaign. Today, Brazile is founder and managing director of Brazile & Associates LLC, a general consulting, grassroots advocacy, and training firm based in Washington, D.C. She is also the vice chair of voter registration and participation at the Democratic National Committee and former interim national chair of the political organization.

Author of the best-selling memoir “Cooking with Grease: Stirring the Pots in American Politics,” Brazile is an adjunct professor at Georgetown University, a syndicated newspaper columnist for Universal Uclick, a columnist for Ms. Magazine, and O, The Oprah Magazine, and an on-air contributor to CNN and ABC, where she regularly appears on “This Week.” Continue reading “Political Strategist Donna Brazile to Deliver Spelman College Commencement Address on May 17”

Obama Morehouse Speech: President Talks Good Deeds, Race & Manhood At 2013 Commencement

Obama at Morehouse

President Barack Obama, in a soaring commencement address on work, sacrifice and opportunity, told graduates of Morehouse College Sunday to seize the power of their example as black men graduating from college and use it to improve people’s lives.

Noting the Atlanta school’s mission to cultivate, not just educate, good men, Obama said graduates should not be so eager to join the chase for wealth and material things, but instead should remember where they came from and not “take your degree and get a fancy job and nice house and nice car and never look back.”

“So yes, go get that law degree. But if you do, ask yourself if the only option is to defend the rich and powerful, or if you can also find time to defend the powerless,” Obama declared. “Sure, go get your MBA, or start that business, we need black businesses out there. But ask yourself what broader purpose your business might serve, in putting people to work, or transforming a neighborhood.”

“The most successful CEOs I know didn’t start out intent on making money – rather, they had a vision of how their product or service would change things, and the money followed,” he said.  For those headed to medical school, Obama said “make sure you heal folks in underserved communities who really need it, too.” He asked those headed to law school to think about defending the poor.

Continue reading “Obama Morehouse Speech: President Talks Good Deeds, Race & Manhood At 2013 Commencement”

President Obama, First Lady Address Graduates at HBCUs

First lady Michelle Obama delivers the commencement speech during the Bowie State University graduation ceremony at the Comcast Center on the campus of the University of Maryland May 17, 2013 in College Park, Maryland. Obama received and Honorary Doctor of Laws degree before addressing the 600 graduates of Maryland's oldest historically black university and one of the ten oldest in the country. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
First lady Michelle Obama delivers the commencement speech during the Bowie State University graduation ceremony at the Comcast Center on the campus of the University of Maryland May 17, 2013 in College Park, Maryland. Obama received and Honorary Doctor of Laws degree before addressing the 600 graduates of Maryland’s oldest historically black university and one of the ten oldest in the country. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Graduation season is under way and students and their families are joined by a few special guests as they celebrate their achievement.  Among them: President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, who are addressing students at several of the nation’s historically black colleges and universities at graduation ceremonies this year.

On Sunday, the president will make his way to Atlanta, Georgia to address the graduating class at Morehouse College — a landmark all-male school that once enrolled civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King at the age of 15.

Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and senior adviser to the president Valerie Jarrett are also participating in commencement exercises at HBCUs.  So far, Secretary Vilsack has addressed graduates at Tuskegee University, where he also received an honorary degree. Meanwhile, Mrs. Obama  delivered a speech at Bowie State University on Friday.

Aside from President Obama’s highly-anticipated arrival at Morehouse College in the coming days, Jarrett and Secretary Duncanare were expected to participate in commencement services at Clark Atlanta University and Morgan State University this weekend.

article by Lilly Workneh via thegrio.com

Obama Encourages Ohio State Graduates to ‘Dream Bigger’

resident Barack Obama gives the commencement address to the graduating class of The Ohio State University at Ohio Stadium on May 5, 2013 in Columbus, Ohio. Obama addressed the graduates a year from the day he kicked off his re-election campaign at the campus.The president was also given an honorary degree Doctor of Laws. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)
President Barack Obama gives the commencement address to the graduating class of The Ohio State University at Ohio Stadium on May 5, 2013 in Columbus, Ohio. Obama addressed the graduates a year from the day he kicked off his re-election campaign at the campus.The president was also given an honorary degree Doctor of Laws. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A year to the day after kicking off his victorious re-election campaign on this college campus, President Barack Obama returned to Ohio State University and told graduates that only through vigorous participation in their democracy can they right a poorly functioning government and break through relentless cynicism about the nation’s future.

“I dare you, Class of 2013, to do better. I dare you to dream bigger,” Obama said.

In a sunbaked stadium filled with more than 57,000 students, friends and relatives, Obama lamented an American political system that gets consumed by “small things” and works for the benefit of society’s elite. He called graduates to duty to “accomplish great things,” like rebuilding a still-feeble economy and fighting poverty and climate change.

“Only you can ultimately break that cycle. Only you can make sure the democracy you inherit is as good as we know it can be,” Obama told more than 10,000 cap-and-gown-clad graduates gathered for the rite of passage. “But it requires your dedicated, informed and engaged citizenship.”

The visit to Ohio State — the first of three commencement addresses Obama will give this season — was a homecoming of sorts for Obama, who has visited the campus five times over little more than a year, starting with his first official campaign rally here last May. He made many more stops elsewhere in Ohio as he and Republican Mitt Romney dueled for the Midwestern state which was pivotal to Obama’s victories in both 2008 and 2012.

Continue reading “Obama Encourages Ohio State Graduates to ‘Dream Bigger’”

President Obama to Deliver Commencement Speech at Morehouse College

Members of the Morehouse College 2002 graduating class sing their school song during commencement ceremonies May 19, 2002 in Atlanta. (Photo by Erik S. Lesser/Getty Images)

Members of the Morehouse College 2002 graduating class sing their school song during commencement ceremonies May 19, 2002 in Atlanta. (Photo by Erik S. Lesser/Getty Images)

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) — A White House official says President Barack Obama will deliver the commencement address at all-male Morehouse College in Atlanta this spring.  The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. is among the historically black institution’s alumni. Commencement is scheduled for May 19.

Obama typically speaks each spring at a handful of college and university commencement ceremonies, including at one of the military service academies.  Last year, he spoke at commencement ceremonies at all-female Barnard College in New York.

The White House official declined to speak for the record because the schedule of Obama’s commencement speeches has not been released.  The Atlanta Journal-Constitution first reported on Obama’s address at Morehouse.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press article by Darlene Superville via thegrio.com

President and First Lady Appearing At Commencements Of Several HBCUs

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The president, first lady and members of the administration will be making a commencement tour of HBCUs, making addresses and appearances at eleven institutions:

This month, President Obama, the First Lady, and officials from throughout the Administration will deliver commencement addresses to Historically Black Colleges and Universities across the nation.  This weekend Mrs. Obama will send off the graduates of University of Arkansas – Pine Bluff Saturday, May 8th and President Obama will greet the graduates of Hampton University Sunday, May 9th.  In total, eleven HBCUs will receive commencement addresses from Obama Administration officials this year.

Other officials participating in graduation ceremonies include Secretary Robert Gates, Department of Defense (Morehouse College), Secretary Arne Duncan, Department of Education (Xavier University), Administrator Charles Bolden, NASA (Huston-Tillotson University), Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President (Morgan State University), Melody Barnes, Director, White House Domestic Policy Council (Virginia Union University), and Ambassador Susan Rice, United Nations (Spelman College).  In addition, John Wilson, Executive Director of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities, is scheduled to speak to Wilberforce University, Wiley College, and Harris-Stowe State University.

During a recent White House ceremony honoring HBCUs, President Obama spoke of the importance of these institutions to the well-being of not just the African American community, but to the entire nation.

President Obama said, “[W]e’re not only doing this because these schools are a gateway to a better future for African Americans; we’re doing it because their success is vital to a better future for all Americans.”

Below is the complete schedule of administration appearances

Obama Administration HBCU Commencement Schedule*

Saturday, May 1st

· John Wilson, Executive Director, White House Initiative on HBCUs – Wilberforce University

Saturday, May 8th

· First Lady Michelle Obama – University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff

· Secretary Arne Duncan, Department of Education – Xavier University

· NASA Administrator Charles Bolden – Huston-Tillotson University

· White House Domestic Policy Director Melody Barnes – Virginia Union University

· John Wilson, Executive Director, White House Initiative on HBCUs – Wiley College

May 9th

· President Barack Obama – Hampton University

May 11th

· John Wilson, Executive Director, White House Initiative on HBCUs – Harris-Stowe State University

May 15th

· Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President – Morgan State University

May 16th

· Secretary Robert Gates, Department of Defense – Morehouse College

· Ambassador Susan Rice, United Nations – Spelman College

article via www.theroot.com