Attendees at the May 2012 commencement ceremony could find the event to be a hilariously good time.
The Senior Class Council, which is responsible for choosing the commencement speaker, recently sent an email to senior students asking them to choose from a list of seven speakers. The list included Chris Anderson, Curator of TED talks; David Kennedy, founder of Wieden & Kennedy advertising agency and CU graduate; famous talk show host Ellen DeGeneres; Joe Kernen of CNBC’s Squawk Box and CU graduate; Jill Abramson, the first female executive editor of the New York Times; and Trey Parker and Matt Stone, creators of the show South Park and CU Graduates.
Megan Roper, a 22-year-old senior advertising and studio arts major, and the president of the Senior Class Council this year, said that the student turnout to vote on a commencement speaker has been large this year.
“The survey is actually still open,” Roper said. “We’ve gotten a huge response already, I think it’s bigger than any senior class has gotten. As of Tuesday, we had 1,241 people vote.”
Roper said that DeGeneres and Parker and Stone had collectively received about 66 percent of the votes so far, making them the most popular choices.
“I think everyone has kind of always wanted to hear Trey Parker and Matt Stone speak, and I think they’re actually becoming more of a reality this year,” Roper said. “They’ve gotten lots of positive press with their musical and the Tony award and stuff like that, so they could be a possibility, which is exciting. And because they went [to CU] I think they would be really excited about the opportunity to speak.”
Ben Robinson, a 21-year-old senior in the news-editorial track, said that he didn’t participate in the survey because he was too busy preparing for finals, but would like to see a comedic speaker for the commencement ceremony.
“I would like to see somebody funny,” Robinson said. “I would go with Trey and Matt.”
The council’s commencement chair, Sosi Papazian, a 20-year-old junior majoring in linguistics and English literature, said that she decided to join the Senior Class Council as a way to give back to CU and to be involved in something meaningful.
“We’ve been working really hard all semester to come up with a list of candidates to speak,” Papazian said. “We want to make sure we get someone that really represents what CU stands for and CU’s atmosphere.”
The council also received feedback from teachers and several CU departments about who the speaker should be. Roper must also meet with Chancellor DiStephano next Wednesday in order to have the speaker approved.
“We want someone who is going to inspire the students,” Papaziano said. “We want someone who can show the students that even graduating in this economy, they can still be successful.”
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Hadley Vandiver at Hadley.firstname.lastname@example.org.