Obama to Speak at UC Irvine Commencement in Angel Stadium

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President Obama has agreed to speak at the UC Irvine commencement celebration set to be held in Angel Stadium on June 14, the university announced in a news release on Thursday.


UC Irvine announced that President Obama would speak at their commencement ceremony. (Credit: Getty Images – left, and UC Irvine Communications – right)

“We are thrilled that the president has accepted our invitation to deliver the keynote address at our commencement exercises this June,” said University of California, Irvine Chancellor Michael V. Drake in a news release.

The event honors the accomplishments of the more than 8,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional school students of the graduating class of 2014 and kicks off the 50th anniversary celebration of the campus, the release stated.

The initial invitation was extended to the president in a letter from Chancellor Drake last April. That was followed up by about 10,000 postcards signed by students, faculty, staff and alumni, according to the news release.

In March, the postcards were delivered to the White House Office of Public Engagement, along with a student-produced video invitation.


Wilbert Cheng, student video producer/director, left, and Mamadou Ndiaye, UC Irvine’s 7-feet-6-inch center, filmed the recorded invitation asking President Barack Obama to speak at the June 14 commencement ceremony. (Credit: Sherry L. K. Main / UC Irvine)

The White House confirmed on Thursday that the president would speak at the ceremony, the university stated in the news release.

The event commemorates the 50 year anniversary of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s dedication of the campus land that would become UC Irvine, according to the release.

“Help us demonstrate to the world that people of compassion and commitment can free their fellow citizens from the bonds of injustice, the prisons of poverty and the chains of ignorance,” Johnson said in June of 1964.

UC Irvine is located in Orange County and has more than 28,000 students, according to the news release.

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