Past Commencements and Speakers

Visit the Miami Commencement page for details on this year's and future commencements.


YEAR DATE SPEAKER TOPIC/DETAILS
2014 17-May Forest Whitaker. Oscar-winning actor

2013 11-May Wil Haygood, Author and Journalist

2012 5-May A. R. Rahman, Composer and Musician
2012 14-Dec Gillian Oakenfull, Associate Professor, Marketing, 2012 Ohio Professor of the Year

2011 7-May Indra Nooyi, Chairman and CEO, PepsiCo
2011 16-Dec Charlotte Newman Goldy, Asociate Professor, History, 2011 Effective Educator

2010 7-May Kenneth Merten, US Ambassador to Haiti
2010 17-Dec Ryan Barilleaux, Professor of Political Science, 2010 Effective Educator

2009 9-May Paul Ryan and Steve Driehaus, US Representatives
2009 18-Dec Jon Yamashiro, Associate Professor, Art, 2009 Effective Educator

2008 10-May Robin Roberts, Anchor, ABC News “Good Morning America”
2008 19-Dec Osama Ettouney, Chair and Professor of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, 2008-09 Effective Educator

2007 5-May John R. Lewis, US Representative and Civil Rights Activist

2006 7-May-06 Peggy Noonan, Author and Former Presidential Speech Writer
2006 15-Dec Judith de Luce, Chair and Professor, Classics

2005 7-May William Safire, Journalist, Historian, Novelist

2004 8-May Mrs. Jean Sadat, Widow of President Anwar Sadat and Egyptian Women’s Rights Activist
2004 17-Dec Katherine Hone, Student, Fine Arts

2003 5-May Andy Rooney, CBS News correspondent
2003 19-Dec Stacey Kinsey, Student, Education and Allied Professions

2002 5-May Charles Gibson, ABC News Anchor 
2002 13-Dec Irina Dorman, Student, Business Administration

2001 6-May Theodore C. Rogers, Chairman, American Industrial Partners, Great Lakes Carbon, Consoltex, Stanadyne Automotive, and CIS

2000 7-May Joshua T. Pack, Student; Nocole S. Bismark, Student
2000 15-Dec Casey M. Brown, Student, School of Education and Allied Professions

1999 9-May Michael E. Oleshansky, Student, Business; Sarah Berno, Student
1999 17-Dec Victoria Dell Burton, Middletown Student
1998 10-May Colleen M. Dec, Student, School of Applied Science; Jonathan K. David, Student, Arts and Science
1998 21-Aug Diane Frost-Wells, Student, Miami Hamilton
1998 18-Dec Mary K. Rozier, Student, Education and Allied Professions
1997 19-Dec-97 Noah Borrero, Student, Education and Allied Professions; Alyson Bryant Wirth, Student, School of Fine Arts
1997 11-May Nicole M. Valiquet, Student, Education and Allied Professions; Kim Dixon, Student, Interdisciplinary Studies
1997 22-Aug Dianna M. Wesley, Student, Arts and Science; Donald Miller, Student, School of Business
1996 12-May David M. Schmid, Student; Shannon Lopata, Student
1996 23-Aug G. Nathan Carnes and Santha Jones, Students
1996 20-Dec Jennifer Wood Molloy, Student, Applied Science; Lisa Ann Miller, Student, Miami Middletown
1995 7-May Laura E. Curfman, Student; Martin Fish, Student
1995 25-Aug Kristine M. Msnross, Student; Ling-Yi Zhou. Student
1995 22-Dec Gwenael Marie Denome, Student; Julie Momchilov, Student
1994 8-May [No speakers]
1994 19-Aug Christopher Hennon, Student, Aeronautics; Donna Fox, Student, Education
1994 16-Dec Heidi Ferguson, Student, Business; Kristopher M. Kerr, Student. Fine Arts]
1993 9-May C. Michael Gooden, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Integrated Systems Analysts,[Meeting the challenges of a changing society-on and off the job]
1993 9-May Donald M. Stewart, President, The College Board [Graduates should be "trailblazers" for change, help us to restore our center and dream great dreams again]
1993 20-Aug [No speaker]
1993 17-Dec [No speaker]
1992 10-May John McClaughry, US Senator, Vermont, [American experiment in democracy is yours to fulfill, each in your own way]
1992 10-May Stephen Jay Gould, Professor of Zoology, Harvard University, [The "new" vs. the "old" knowledge]
1992 21-Aug John Weld Peck, Partner, Peck, Shaffer and Williams, [Graduates should not only pursue careers, but look for areas in which they can help their communities]
1992 18-Dec Todd H. Bailey, Partner, Frost and Jacobs, [Commit to charity or community service in addition to your careers]
1991 12-May Clifton R. Wharton, Jr., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association, College Retirement Equities Fund, [We can contribute to the making of our destinies; social change can only be forged in the present]
1991 12-May Thomas J. Moyer, Chief Justice, Ohio Supreme Court, [Average individuals can make a difference]
1991 23-Aug Jane Butler Kahle, Condit Professor of Science Education, Department of Teacher Education, Miami University, [Privilege of education carries responsibilities]
1991 20-Dec John I. Goodlad, Professor and Director, Center for Educational Review, [We confuse much schooled with being well educated]
1990 13-May John W. Altman, Executive Vice President, Continental Polymers
1990 13-May Gene E. Likens, Director, Institute of Ecosystem Studies, Vice President, New York Botanical Gardens, [Miami graduates need to become environmental activists]
1990 24-Aug Lee Etta Powell, Superintendent, Cincinnati Pubic Schools, [Graduates should be leaders as well as servants and be catalysts in quest for world peace]
1990 21-Dec Kent B. McGough, President, McGough and Associates, [Graduates need to be individuals]
1989 7-May Richard T. Farmer, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, Cintas Corporation, [Cling to your values]
1989 7-May Jill Ker Conway, Historian, MIT, [Graduates have responsibility to bring their minds to bear on pressing problems, discipline themselves, and monitor behavior during their professional careers]  
1989 25-Aug Josiah Hillerman Blackmore,II, President, Professor of Law, Capital University, "Freedom and Education: Discovering the Reality of Oz"
1989 22-Dec F. Story Musgrave, Astronaut, [Space age isn't over yet]
1988 8-May Gilbert M. Grosvenor, President and Chairman of the Board, National Geographic Society, [Americans can no longer afford to look arrogantly at the world through their own narrow perspectives]
1988 8-May Rita F. Dove, 1987 Pulitzer Prize Winner for Poetry, [Purpose of liberal education is to make students flexible]
1988 19-Aug Lydie Wurth-Polfer, Mayor, City of Luxembourg, [In a world increasingly resembling a global village, Atlantic Alliance members need to speak of sharing roles, risks, and responsibilities]
1988 16-Dec John Stone, Professor of Medicine, Associate Dean and Director of Admissions, Emory University School of Medicine, Poet, Writer, "The Holy Fire"
1987 10-May Roger L. Howe, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, US Precision Lens, [In their quest for happiness and success, people must look inward to find out what brings them joy and outward to improving society]
1987 10-May Donald C. Fanta, President and Chief Executive Officer, The Ohio Company, [Graduates will be among those expected to make decisions that will change society in the next decade]
1987 21-Aug Ara R. Parseghian, Football Coach, TV Sports Commentator, Businessman, Humanitarian, [Seek confidence in yourself]
1987 18-Dec Vernal G. Riffe, Jr. Speaker, Ohio House of Representatives, [Fall back on values and education gained at Miami] 
1986 11-May Richard E. Heckert, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, El Du Pont de Nemors and Co., [Need to solve budget and trade deficit]
1986 11-May Emily T. Vermeule, Professor of Classics, Harvard University, [What the Humanities mean to us]
1986 27-Aug Ernest L. Boyer, President, Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, [The U.S. needs to experience a love affair with teachers]
1986 X-December 19 Thomas C. Page, Industrialist
1985 12-May John G. Smale, President and Director, Procter and Gamble Company, [Today's world better than mankind has lived in before]
1985 12-May Jack Kemp, US Representative, New York, [Make America what God meant it to be]
1985 2-Aug Norman Francis, Xavier University, Louisiana, [Too many poorly educated high school students, especially among the poor and minorities]
1985 20-Dec Betty L. Siegel-President, Kennesaw College, Marietta, Georgia "Knowledge With Commitment"
1984 15-May Hanna Holborn Gray, President, University of Chicago, [Role of education in acquiring critical judgment and developing intellectual liberty]
1984 24-Aug Phillip R. Shriver, Miami President Emeritus, Professor of History, [Learning must be a lifelong process]
1984 21-Dec William M. Isaac Chairman of the Board, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, [When the pursuit of self-interest benefits society; when it doesn't]
1983 15-May Malcolm S. Forbes, Publisher, Author, [Predicts a time of unmatched productivity]
1983 19-Aug Lawrence A. Cremin, Historian, Educator, [Revival of Hope]
1983 16-Dec John D. Millett, President Emeritus, "The Responsibility of the College Graduate"
1982 17-Dec-82 Elizabeth F. Loftus, Psychologist, [Details of latest work on human memory]
1982 16-May George Bush, US Vice President, [Peace through strength]
1982 X-August 20, 1982 David Mathews, President, Charles F. Kettering Foundation
1981 10-May Clarence J. Brown, Jr. Congressman, Ohio, [Strength of America lays with the individual and the family]
1981 X-August 27 Francis Grove Rodgers, Vice President, Marketing, IBM Corporation
1981 X-December 18 Morris Pollard, Microbiologist
1980 11-May Philip Caldwell, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, Ford Motor Company, [Be prepared to take risks in any field of endeavor]