Fareed Zakaria announced as keynote speaker for 167th Commencement


Madison Weaver, Assistant News Editor

University President John Bravman announced to students on Feb. 13 that bestselling author, columnist, and television host Fareed Zakaria will be the keynote speaker at the University’s 167th commencement ceremony.

Zakaria is the host of CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS,” is a New York Times bestselling author, as well as a columnist for The Washington Post and a contributing editor for The Atlantic.

In fall 2016, the Bucknell Student Government (BSG) senior class congress gathered to discuss potential speakers by bringing in suggestions and descriptions of their top choices.

“We spent a couple meetings watching the videos, critically assessing each speaker, and eventually, we solidified a list of close to 30 suggestions to submit to the university. Zakaria was a favorite from the moment his name was mentioned,” Danielle Taylor ’17 said.

Taylor worked closely with Associate Dean of Students Kari Conrad and Chief Communications Officer Andy Hirsch during the selection process to ensure that the speaker would present an intriguing story with diverse experiences.

“Zakaria is an extremely well educated and accomplished man. This was not a decision made lightly and we are absolutely thrilled that he accepted our invitation. I trust that he will add to the joy and inspiration that I am sure commencement weekend will bring,” Taylor said.

“Fareed Zakaria has traveled the path on which our graduates are about to set out: the search for personal and professional success built on the foundation of a liberal arts education,” Bravman said in an article on the University’s website announcing the speaker. “In addition to championing the liberal arts, Mr. Zakaria possesses a vast knowledge of public affairs, and I believe the members of the Class of 2017 will benefit greatly from his insights and perspective on the world around us.”

This year, the commencement ceremony for the class of 2017 will take place on the Malesardi Quadrangle on May 21 at 10 a.m.

“My fellow seniors and I are really excited to hear what Mr. Zakaria has to say,” Taylor said.

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