HIGH POINT, N.C., Oct. 25, 2007 - Continuing in his quest to bring world-class speakers to the students of High Point University, President Nido Qubein announced today that Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas will be the 2008 Commencement speaker, scheduled for May 3, 2008 at 9 a.m.
"We're committed to giving our students the best education possible at High Point University; bringing recognized lecturers and speakers to our campus is one way to do that," said Qubein. "Justice Thomas is a respected figure in our nation's justice system and, as an active Supreme Court Justice, he is an appropriate choice for our Commencement speaker. We are delighted that he has accepted our invitation, and we look forward to hearing his message for our 2008 graduating class."
In addition, Grammy Award winner and multi-platinum entertainer Lee Greenwood, whose hit "God Bless the USA," topped the charts, will be on hand during High Point University's Commencement to entertain graduates and their families as a special musical guest.
This year's Baccalaureate message will be delivered by Thomas G. Long, a Presbyterian minister and Bandy Professor of Preaching at Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta, Ga. The Baccalaureate ceremony will be held Friday, May 2 at 6 p.m.
In 2005, the university brought former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani to campus as its Commencement speaker. In 2006, Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan served as the institution's Commencement speaker, and in 2007 American icon Bill Cosby addressed the graduates. The commitment to bring world-class speakers continues in 2008 with Justice Thomas.
Appointed to the High Court by President Bush in 1991, Justice Thomas was the second African American to join the bench. He attended Conception Seminary and received an A.B., cum laude, from Holy Cross College, and a J.D. from Yale Law School in 1974. He was admitted to law practice in Missouri in 1974, and served as an assistant attorney general of Missouri from 1974–1977, an attorney with the Monsanto Company from 1977–1979, and legislative assistant to Senator John Danforth from 1979–1981. From 1981–1982, he served as assistant secretary for civil rights, U.S. Department of Education, and as chairman of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission from 1982–1990. He became a Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in 1990.
More details on Commencement will be released as they are finalized.
At High Point University, every student receives an extraordinary education in a fun environment with caring people. HPU is a liberal arts institution with approximately 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students from 53 countries and 44 states at campuses in High Point and Winston-Salem. It is ranked by US News and World Report 6th among comprehensive universities in the South and in the top 100 nationally. The university offers 68 undergraduate majors, 33 minors and seven graduate-degree programs. It is accredited by the Commission of Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and is a member of the NCAA, Division I and the Big South Conference.
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