President Biden to speak at May UD commencement

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President Joseph R. Biden Jr. will again deliver the commencement address at his alma mater on Saturday, May 28.

“The entire University of Delaware community is truly honored to welcome President Biden as our distinguished guest — and the first sitting U.S. president to deliver a Commencement address at UD — to celebrate the excellence and achievement of the Class of 2022,” UD President Dennis Assanis said. “His commitment to a lifetime of public service is an inspiring example for our graduates, as well as all our students and alumni, of what they can accomplish with a UD education, whatever path they may choose in life.” 

The commencement ceremony, scheduled for 9:30 a.m., May 28, in Delaware Stadium, is a ticketed event open only to graduating students and their guests. Some 4,000 graduates are expected to attend, with about 16,000 family and friends. The ceremony also will be streamed.

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Biden spoke at four previous UD graduation ceremonies throughout his career — in 1978, 1987, 2004 (when he received a honorary doctor of laws degree) and 2014.

The president and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden belong to a group known as “Double Dels,” couples who are both UD alumni. He received his bachelor’s degree with a double major in history and political science in 1965. Jill earned a bachelor’s degree in English in 1975 and her doctorate in education in 2006.

Biden is the first president in recent decades to not graduate from an Ivy League institution.

Biden has maintained close ties with his alma mater and visited the campus numerous times in both official and unofficial capacities.  

The university is the site of the Joseph R. Biden, Jr. School of Public Policy and Administration.

In 2017, Biden became the founding director of UD’s Biden Institute, a research center that develops public policy solutions for domestic problems, including civil rights, environmental sustainability and violence against women. His sister and long-time advisor Valerie Biden Owens, also a UD alumna, now serves as chair of the Biden Institute.

In 2011, Biden donated his Senatorial papers to the University of Delaware Library and delivered the inaugural James R. Soles Lecture on the Constitution and Citizenship. Those papers have been the subject of controversy after requests to view personal papers were denied.

In 1984, he was inducted into the University’s Alumni Wall of Fame.

For more information about UD’s Commencement ceremony, visit www.udel.edu/commencement

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