The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

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Rainn Wilson comes to Bucknell

Charlotte+Olin+%2F+The+Bucknellian
Charlotte Olin / The Bucknellian

The Student Lectureship Committee welcomed actor, writer and YouTuber Rainn Wilson to the University this past Tuesday.

Best known for portraying Dwight Schrute on NBC’s Emmy Award-winning comedy, “The Office,” Wilson discussed many topics ranging from his nine years long career as Dwight Schrute on “The Office” to his newly published book: “Soul Boom: Why We Need a Spiritual Revolution.” The forum was moderated by Henry Martin ’25.

Martin asked Wilson questions entirely written by Bucknell students; the first half of the evening mainly referred to Wilson’s role as Dwight Schrute. 

Comedically, but also in a serious tone, Wilson answered questions and explained his experiences as a famous actor of an extremely popular fictional character and how he has managed his life with his fans distinguishing him between the two. 

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“I am really super grateful for the role, and I am so grateful because of the show because I get to meet so many people, travel the world and speak with you guys,” said Wilson. “So much of my life has been good because of that show and Dwight Schrute.”

He also shared an entertaining story about his experiences in Pennsylvania, such as in the city of Scranton, the town of Lewisburg and on Bucknell’s campus from years past.

Among his enthralling experiences as an actor, he discussed his background, his upbringing and his education and how that led him to the role in one of the most famous sitcoms in America. 

Wilson explained how technology brought about the popularity of “The Office” after it wasn’t doing so well at the beginning. He also shared some of his favorite episodes, his best friends and the most cherished moments he had from the decade he spent filming it. 

He also discussed a possible reboot of the show and explained his ideas on how that might happen. 

In the second half of the forum, Wilson shared how he manifested and reconceptualized spirituality and spiritual topics in his new book. He stressed that due to the mental health epidemic that is going on in the younger generation, spirituality could be a tool to help people through that struggle. 

Wilson conveyed his own personal religious experience when growing up and the texts he read and the conversations he had, saying he “found wisdom.” When he got older, he shared about his crippling anxiety and depression attacks. In the midst of this despair, he looked back on the wisdom he acquired as a kid and turned to spiritual teachings to lift him out of his own mental struggle. 

“I was always searching for the truth and was one of those guys who had to know life’s great questions,” said Wilson.

When Covid hit, Wilson found an opportunity to put all of what he learned through his struggle into a book that will help young people who suffer or previously suffered from mental depression and anxiety. If that doesn’t work, Wilson said you should try watching “The Office.”

The forum ended with Wilson answering questions from many Bucknell students interested in learning more about being an actor, his role as Dwight and other personal things one might not find his Internet biography page. 

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