So we’re the sesquicentennial class (150th graduating class for all ignoramuses) and besides getting to sound really snobby and having the ability to pronounce "sesquicentennial" with ease (don’t worry, it took me at least three years), we also get major moola thrown our way for graduation.
I had no idea we were going to be considered so special, but with the amount of 150th events put on this year, it has become clear that we are being considered special and should expect the best. I don’t hate it.
In order to properly acknowledge this, the senior class is waiting with bated breath to find out who our indubitably high-profile commencement speaker will be.
Graduation Day, Doomsday, or May 20 is the day that we are unfeelingly kicked out of our dorms by 8pm, that we leave those who have become our family for the past four years, that we leave the place that has changed us all, that we leave the place that we have given our time, hearts, and $200,000. A great graduation speaker may help to cushion the blow and if I can find one thing to be excited about, I hope it’s listening to this speaker.
The news is to come out later this week, as the official Boston College Twitter handle says, and speculation is rampant.
There was a Dr. Phil rumor being circulated (Um, no thanks). The Big Man himself, Barack Obama, was in the mix, but evidently he has prior engagements. Governor Deval Patrick would have been solid, but he already spoke on campus this semester.
Since the administration is clearly willing to pay the big bucks for our speakers, I have compiled a list of dream commencement speakers. This is one of those times when “Only in your dreams!” doesn’t apply: dreams CAN come true in this instance. You know how you always wanted that unlimited shopping spree with no limits or conditions? Well, this is it.
After the Transportation Secretary debacle two years ago, you can bet this year's speaker is going to be good. Bob Woodruff is small cakes compared to the following five nominees. The events of the past week have especially thrown Boston into the spotlight and this is going to be a high-profile honor that anyone would be privileged to have.
In order of likelihood, I give you the Top 5 below.
5) Michelle Obama
Okay, so the POTUS has prior engagements, but honestly, the FLOTUS would be just as great. She’s eloquent, intelligent, and knows how to break it down.
She would be the perfect woman to reassure us about graduating. Mrs. Obama graduated with degrees in sociology and African American studies, perfect for the administration's push to assert the importance of the liberal arts. She also has ties to social justice, having started community service programs at the University of Chicago when she was a dean.
And, after all Boston has been through recently, who better than the mother of our nation to come give us words of wisdom?
4) Morgan Freeman
This is my wild card. I know for a fact that I am going to be hungover and wicked tired during the ceremony, so listening to Morgan Freeman talk for a half hour would be pretty great at that point. I would not care what he said; he could read his March of the Penguins script for all I care.
His voice has this instantly calming quality that would soothe us in our time of distress. If the administration is really digging for a legitimate reason, he does have experience playing God and we are a Catholic institution….
3) Stephen Colbert
I know the go-to comedian would be Amy Poehler. However, she went across the Charles to Harvard a couple years ago, so no, she doesn’t make the list because she BETRAYED US.
Some may argue that we didn’t invite her to anything, but if we are inviting Chris O’Donnell to talk at BC, then we have DEFINITELY invited the woman who hosted the Golden Globes, has a hit show ,and was a notable SNL cast member (no offense to O’Donnell, but Poehler clearly has more star power). Sorry, Amy, no one likes to be snubbed.
So instead I present to you my DREAM. You know that now-slightly-obnoxious “Sesqui and we know it” slogan? Well, I have to say, Stephen Colbert is sexy and he knows it (and so do I). That slightly loony smile and undeniable southern charm would be the perfect you’re-no-longer-a-college-student pick-me-up.
BC’s strict adherence to Catholic policies has been the subject of many an article of late, and one way to non-confrontationally update this image is to invite Colbert. He’s progressive and funny, and would have a field day with BC and our condom policy, making commencement more fun than it has been in years.
He also had the most funny and heartfelt reaction to the Boston Marathon bombings which you should definitely watch if you haven’t yet here.
2) Hillary Clinton
Bill Clinton, you ask? NO WAY. No one wants that guy around so many 20-year-old women.
Instead, I present Hillary Clinton. She wants to be president, so she needs money and press time. Being our graduation speaker would offer both. A thirty minute platform to let her send out America’s leaders of tomorrow couldn’t look anything but good. BC would be drawn by the prestige of having a former Secretary of State and two-time First Lady. She’s a great strong female role model and obviously a total boss (see photo).
FUN FACT: She was the first student to deliver the commencement address at her own graduation AND receive a SEVEN MINUTE STANDING OVATION. So the woman knows how to deliver an address— we would not be disappointed.
1) John Kerry
Kerry is the most likely choice as the current Secretary of State and BC Law School Alum. This looks good from all angles for Kerry and BC. A step up from the Law School address a couple years ago, his alma mater could properly honor him for his new prestigious and influential position. He has lived all over the world, served in the military, and held numerous positions of political power that he could draw on for a dynamic address.
Plus, he clearly has a sense of humor, making an adult-diaper joke at John McCain’s expense a couple years ago. His jokes are like teacher or priest jokes: you don't want to laugh, but you do so out of pity for them putting themselves out there, but it's appreciated nonetheless.