The word is out; Virginia Governor Mark Warner will keynote the Commencement ceremony this May, and student response is mixed.
It seems every year students and The Hatchet editorial board alike feel the need to recognize the good things about the year’s Commencement speaker, only then to tear him or her down as unfit for the ever-whiny GW graduating class. We refuse to contribute to this cycle.
Mark Warner is a GW graduate, extremely successful businessman and governor of an important state that happens to be on the other side of the Potomac. GW students are so spoiled with good speakers throughout the year because of the University’s unique location, that their standards have become outrageous. It is not enough that the GW Commencement takes place on the White House lawn, but students will not be enthusiastic about graduation unless their favorite celebrity or prominent politician delivers the keynote address.
While it is true that GW could probably afford and attract the largest of names, there is no need to underestimate and attack the legitimacy of Mark Warner as a keynote speaker. It is the power of their words, not their name, which should be important. We implore students to wait until after Commencement to critique the keynote choice.