Katie Couric to Deliver Commencement Address
(Boston) – Boston University today announced that Katie Couric, anchor and managing editor of The CBS Evening News, will deliver the commencement address at Boston University’s 138th graduation ceremonies at BU’s Nickerson Field at 1:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 22.
Ms. Couric will speak before more than 5,000 graduates and 20,000 guests at New England’s largest graduation ceremony a few weeks before she leaves her post at CBS. Couric will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters.
BU President Robert A. Brown announced the commencement, baccalaureate speakers and honorary degree recipients to the members of the Class of 2011 this morning at the annual Senior Breakfast, held at the George Sherman Union.
Brown also revealed that Ahmed Zewail, Ph.D., who teaches at the California Institute of Technology and won a Nobel Prize in 1999 for his research into super-fast molecular transformations, will deliver the Commencement Day baccalaureate address at 11:00 a.m. at Marsh Chapel. Dr. Zewail will also receive an honorary Doctor of Science degree.
The prestigious list of honorary degree recipients includes activist Victoria Reggie Kennedy (Doctor of Laws) who will also speak at the School of Social Work’s convocation; TV chef, author and BU instructor Jacques Pepin (Doctor of Humane Letters); painter Frank Stella (Doctor of Fine arts); and journalist Nina Totenberg (Doctor of Humane Letters).
Also announced today are the recipients of BU’s Metcalf Cup and Prize and Metcalf Awards for Excellence in Teaching. Receiving the esteemed Metcalf Cup is Judith Chaffee, associate professor of movement at the College of Fine Arts. This year’s Metcalf Award winners are Wayne LaMorte, assistant dean for education and professor of epidemiology at the School of Public Health; and David Walker, Maurice Poch Faculty Research Scholar and professor at the School of Law. The Metcalf Cup carries with it a prize of $10,000 and the Metcalf Award winners receive $5,000. Students, faculty and alumni nominate candidates for the awards established in 1973 by a gift from the late Boston University Board of Trustees chairman emeritus Arthur G.B. Metcalf.
When the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric debuted in September 2006, Couric became the first female solo anchor of a weekday network evening news broadcast. Prior to joining CBS, Couric completed a 15-year run as co-anchor of NBC News’ Today.
Couric has covered most of the major breaking news events over the past 15 years, including the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center; the Columbine tragedy in Colorado; six Olympic Games, including the 1996 Atlanta Olympic bombing; the funeral of Princess Diana; the Oklahoma City bombing; the Timothy McVeigh execution; the Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings; and the end of millennium coverage, which she co-anchored with Tom Brokaw.
After losing her husband, Jay Monahan, to colon cancer in 1998, Couric embraced the fight against the country’s No. 2 cancer killer. In March 2000, Couric launched the National Colorectal Cancer Research Alliance in association with the Entertainment Industry Foundation and Lilly Tartikoff, to fund new medical research in colorectal cancer and to conduct educational programs encouraging the prevention and early detection of the disease through proper screening.
Couric was a general assignment reporter for WRC-TV Washington, D.C. (1987-89) and for WTVJ Miami (1984-86). She worked for CNN (1980-84) as an assignment editor, associate producer, producer and, ultimately, political correspondent. Couric began her broadcast journalism career as a desk assistant at ABC News in Washington, D.C. (1979).
Born in Arlington, VA, Couric graduated with honors from the University of Virginia in 1979 with a bachelor’s degree in English and a focus on American studies. She currently lives in New York with her two daughters.
Founded in 1839, Boston University is an internationally recognized private research university with more than 30,000 students participating in undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs. BU consists of 17 colleges and schools along with a number of multi-disciplinary centers and institutes which are central to the school’s research and teaching mission.
High-resolution digital photographs of the 2011 BU Commencement participants can be downloaded here.
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