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Campus News in Brief

Earl Lewis to be commencement speaker

This week it was announced that Earl Lewis, president of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, will be the keynote speaker at this year’s Commencement on Sunday, May 15 in Gesling Stadium.

Lewis was a former provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs and the Asa Griggs Candler Professor of History and African-American Studies at Emory University. He previously held faculty appointments at the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Michigan. He is also the author and co-author of several books including The African American Urban Experience: Perspectives from the Colonial Period to the Present, Defending Diversity: Affirmative Action at the University of Michigan, the award-winning To Make Our World Anew: A History of African Americans, and the heralded book series American Crossroads.

“Dr. Lewis’ dedication to diversity, the humanities, the arts, and the use of digital learning tools to improve education resonates deeply with our core values here at Carnegie Mellon University,” said President Subra Suresh in an email to the Carnegie Mellon community. “We are honored and very fortunate to have Dr. Lewis as our keynote speaker.”

Lewis will also be receiving an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree at Sunday’s ceremony.

CMU alumnus explores the Ivy Leagues

Sean-Michael Green, a Carnegie Mellon alum from the Heinz College Master of Public Management Program from 2005­–2006, has recently been in Pittsburgh promoting his new book The Things I Learned in College. The book focuses on Green’s year long journey exploring the eight Ivy League schools. He spent approximately 30 days at each school talking to students and attending classes.

The book is not a guide for all of the nation’s Ivy League colleges, but rather offers a different view of each university, hopefully bringing back fond memories for old alumni. Green brings his past experience as a stand-up comedian to add to the humor of the novel. Kirkus Reviews describes his writing style as being “highly engaging and entertaining, with dry wit infusing this book.”

Green notes his initial adventures in Pittsburgh and his upward trek through his own college days as being motivated by a past relationship. While attending a local community college he found his work often being scrutinized by his previous girlfriend who attended the University of Pittsburgh. “I was surprised by my good grades at the community college, and I showed my early grades to my girlfriend at the time. She was unimpressed, saying, ‘Well, yeah, you can do that at a community college, but try that at Pitt!’” He went on to get an education at the University of Pittsburgh, the University of Pennsylvania, and Carnegie Mellon University, no doubt fond of the Pennsylvania area and higher education, as shown in his new book.

Green’s explorations of eight of the nation’s most prestigious colleges can be read in The Things I Learned in College now available in paperback and as an e-book through Amazon.