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First Lady Laura Bush to speak at HPU 2012 Commencement

HIGH POINT, N.C., Aug. 18, 2011 - High Point University will continue its tradition of bringing motivating and inspirational speakers to campus by featuring Former First Lady Laura Bush, a champion dedicated to advancing education and promoting the well-being of women and families worldwide, as its 2012 Commencement speaker. Commencement exercises will be held on May 5, 2012.

A former teacher and librarian, Bush was a key advocate of the historic education reform - the No Child Left Behind Act - and a staunch supporter of the NCLB's Reading First Program, which is the largest early reading initiative in American history. She also launched "Ready to Read, Ready to Learn," an education initiative that promoted best practices in early childhood education and raised awareness of innovative teacher training programs. In 2001, she joined the Library of Congress to launch the first National Book Festival.

She also served as the leader of "Helping America's Youth." Through her involvement with this program and others, she focuses on drawing attention to programs that help children avoid risky behaviors.

"Laura Bush has been a tireless champion for national education programs," says HPU president Dr. Nido Qubein. "Her passion and commitment to improving the lives of others will provide an inspiring message for our graduates as they begin their journey towards a life of both success and significance."

In addition to her steadfast support of the education of children in America, she has also remained dedicated in her efforts to raise awareness of breast cancer, heart disease, and other women's health issues.

Bush's memoir, "Spoken from the Heart," is a New York Times No. 1 best seller.

Bush will become part of an extraordinary lineup of HPU Commencement Speakers, including former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani (2005), Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan (2006), Dr. Bill Cosby (2007), U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas (2008), NASA Astronaut Dr. Buzz Aldrin (2009) and Muhtar Kent, CEO of the Coca-Cola Company (2010), and seven-time winner of the Tour de France Lance Armstrong (2011).

At High Point University, every student receives an extraordinary education in an inspiring environment with caring people.? HPU, located in the Piedmont Triad region of North Carolina, is a liberal arts institution with over 4,200 undergraduate and graduate students from 51 countries and 46 states at campuses in High Point and Winston-Salem. It is ranked by US News and World Report at No. 3 among Regional Colleges in the South. ranks HPU in the top 7 percent among "America's Best Colleges." Parade Magazine lists HPU in the top 25 private schools in the nation. The university offers 50 undergraduate majors, 43 undergraduate minors and 14 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. Visit High Point University on the Web at

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