Notable Speakers

▷ See our Speakers Archive on Soundcloud and YouTube

Honors Convocation 2018

Professor and Director of the School of Nursing and Caroline F. Rupert Chair of Nursing Vickie Folse, winner of the 2018 Kemp Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence, gave the keynote remarks on April 11, 2018.

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Founders' Day Convocation 2018

Jeremy McCarter, co-author of Hamilton: The Revolution, spoke on Feb. 21, 2018.

President's Convocation 2017

Award-winning author Jelani Cobb spoke about "The Half-Life of Freedom: Race and Justice in America Today," on Sept. 6, 2017.

Watch selected clips:

Cycle of History   |   The Confederacy    |   Engage with Difference

Honors Convocation 2017

Professor of Anthropology Rebecca Gearhart Mafazy, winner of the 2017 Kemp Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence, gave the keynote remarks, “Curiosity and What To Make of It,” at the convocation on April 12, 2017

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Founders' Day Convocation 2017

Mona Hanna-Attisha, the pediatrician who helped expose the Flint water crisis, gave keynote remarks on Feb. 15, 2017.

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Jenny

President’s Convocation 2016

Journalist Jenny Nordberg, author of the Summer Reading selection, The Underground Girls of Kabul, spoke on Sept. 14, 2016.

Read The Pantagraph Coverage

Honors Day 2016

Professor of Physics Linda French, 2016 winner of the Kemp Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence, gave the address, “The Long and Winding Trail.”

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 Eboo

Founders' Day Convocation 2016

National interfaith leader Eboo Patel gave the keynote address, "Interfaith Leadership: Engaging Faith and Philosophical Diversity in the 21st Century" on Feb. 17, 2016.

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President's Convocation 2015

Kevin Roose, author of the summer reading selection,  The Unlikely Disciple: A Sinner’s Semester at America’s Holiest University,  spoke on Sept. 9, 2015.

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New Student Convocation 2015

Professor of Physics Linda French gave the address, "The Value of Not Having All the Answers."

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Honors Day 2015

Associate Professor of Political Science Kathleen Montgomery gave the address, "Reflections of an Accidental Political Scientist," on April 8, 2015.

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Founders' Day 2015

Acclaimed Children’s Illustrator & Author Anita Lobel spoke at the Convocation on Feb. 25, 2015.

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Read The Pantagraph Coverage

President's Convocation 2014

Brando Skyhorse, author of the Summer Reading Program selection The Madonnas of Echo Park, spoke on Sept. 3, 2014.

Read The Pantagraph Coverage

New Student Convocation 2014

Associate Professor of Political Science Kathleen Montgomery told new students "YOLO" in her address on Aug. 19, 2014.

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Commencement 2014

Deanna Jent '84 gave the address, "Story and Truth: The Dionysus Connection," at Commencement for the Class of 2014 on May 4, 2014.

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Read her Remarks

 

Honors Day 2014

Associate Professor of Chemistry Rebecca Roesner gave the address, "The Art and Science of Living in the Present," on April 9, 2014.

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Founders' Day 2014

Luma Mufleh, head coach of the Fugees Soccer Team – subject of the University's summer reading selection, Outcasts United – spoke at the Founders' Day Convocation on Feb. 19, 2014.

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Adlai E. Stevenson Memorial Lecture

Journalist and commentator David Brooks delivered the 29th Adlai E. Stevenson Memorial Lecture on Sept. 24, 2013.
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President's Convocation 2013

Warren St. John, author of the summer reading selection Outcasts United, spoke on Sept. 4, 2013.
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New Student Convocation 2013

Rebecca Roesner, chair and associate professor of chemistry and winner of the 2014 Kemp Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence, spoke to the Class of 2017 on Aug. 20, 2013.

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Commencement 2013

Juan Salgado '91 spoke at Commencement on May 5, 2013

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Honors Day 2013

Professor of Physics Narendra Jaggi, winner of the 2013 Kemp Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence, gave the remarks at the convocation on April 10, 2013.

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Founders' Day 2013

Civil War scholar Allen C. Guelzo spoke at the Founders' Day Convocation on Feb. 27, 2013.

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President's Convocation 2012

Rebecca Skloot, author of the 2012 Summer Reading Program selection The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, spoke at the President's Convocation on Sept. 12, 2012.

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Commencement 2012

Awadagin Pratt, an educator, concert pianist and founder of the Dr. T.A.E.C. Pratt Music Foundation, delivered the Commencement address on April 29, 2012.

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Founders' Day 2012

Activist and Dead Man Walking author Sister Helen Prejean spoke on Feb. 8, 2012.

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President's Convocation 2011

Ghanaian-British-American philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah spoke on Aug. 31, 2011.

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Commencement 2011

Guggenheim Fellow and poet Linda Gregerson spoke to graduates on May 1, 2011.

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Founders' Day 2011

Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Jorie Graham spoke on Feb. 23, 2011.

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Colin Beavan

President's Convocation 2010

No Impact Man author Colin Beavan spoke on Sept. 8, 2010.

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Commencement 2010

Neurosurgeon Ann Stroink '76 celebrated lifelong learning in her address on May 2, 2010.

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Honors Convocation 2010

Associate Professor of English Wes Chapman, 2010 winner of the Kemp Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence, spoke about the place of happiness in the liberal arts during the Honors Convocation on April 14, 2010.

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Founders' Day 2010

Environmental justice activist Dorceta Taylor spoke on Feb. 17, 2010.

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President's Convocation 2009

At the President's Convocation on Sept. 9, 2009, humanitarian Greg Mortenson spoke about his mission to promote peace by building schools and training teachers in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Hear excerpts: Clip 1 | Clip 2

Wes Chapman

New Student Convocation 2009

Associate Professor of English Wes Chapman, 2010 winner of the Kemp Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence, addressed the New Student Convocation on Aug. 18, 2009.

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Commencement 2009

Howard Fricke '60, retired CEO of Security Benefit Group of Companies, spoke at Commencement on May 3, 2009.

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Hear his Remarks

Founders' Day 2009

Pulitzer Prize-nominated historian James O. Horton gave an address titled "Abraham Lincoln: Slavery and the Civil War" for Illinois Wesleyan University's annual Founders' Day Convocation on February 18, 2009.

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Temple Grandin

President's Convocation 2008

Temple Grandin shared personal insights into the unique ways autistic individuals perceive the world during the President's Convocation on Sept. 10, 2008.

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Brian Hatcher

First-Year Convocation 2008

McFee Professor of Religion and Humanities Brian Hatcher addressed first-year students in their first Illinois Wesleyan convocation on Aug. 19, 2008.

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Kevin Dunn

Commencement 2008

Actor Kevin Dunn, who attended Illinois Wesleyan in the '70s, delivered the Commencement address on May 4, 2008.

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Soul Food Dinner

Journalist and author Roland S. Martin spoke at the Soul Food Dinner on Feb. 24, 2008.

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Founders' Day 2008

James E. Hansen, Director of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Goddard Institute for Space Studies, encouraged the 2008 Founders' Day audience to take action before irrevocable damage is done to the planet.

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Stevenson Lecture Series

Acclaimed documentary filmmaker Ken Burns spoke about his recent series on World War II, The War. Burns visited Illinois Wesleyan and Illinois State Universities on Nov. 1, 2007, as part of the Adlai E. Stevenson Lecture Series.

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President's Convocation 2007

Tracy Kidder, author of the 2007 summer reading selection, Mountains Beyond Mountains, addressed the President's Convocation on Sept. 26, 2007

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Commencement 2007

Demetria Kalodimos '81, an award-winning news anchor with WSMV Television in Nashville, Tenn., addressed the graduates on May 6, 2007.

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Honors Convocation 2007

James Sikora, professor of sociology and winner of the 2007 Pantagraph Award for Teaching Excellence, addressed the Honors Convocation on April 18, 2007.

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Illinois Wesleyan Associates Luncheon

Orion Samuelson, renowned agribusiness director of WGN and Chicago's "Voice of Agriculture" since 1960, spoke at the Illinois Wesleyan Associates Luncheon on April 17, 2007.

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Commencement 2006

Michael A. Mason '80, Executive Assistant Director for Administration at the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Washington D.C., delivered the Commencement address on Sunday, April 30.

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Greg Poland

Commencement 2005

Greg Poland '77, director of the Mayo Vaccine Research Group, delivered the Commencement address on May 1, 2005.

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Commencement 2004

Immigration attorney Carlina Tapia-Ruano '77 delivered the Commencement address on May 2, 2004.

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Historic Speech at Illinois Wesleyan University

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Feb. 10, 1966

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or Read a Transcript