Bloomberg to Deliver 2012 Convocation Address
Posted by Alfonse Muglia on February 29, 2012
Let the Cornell-New York City connection continue.
The Cornell Daily Sun announced this evening that Mayor Michael Bloomberg will speak at the convocation ceremony for the Cornell University Class of 2012.
The 30th richest man in the world, according to Forbes Magazine’s 2011 list, Bloomberg will be the second consecutive New York City mayor to deliver the keynote address. Former mayor and Times Magazine’s Person of the Year Rudy Giuliani gave last year’s address.
Bloomberg was a registered Democrat for the majority of his life, before switching to the Republican Party when he first ran for mayor of New York City in 2001. He has since increased the state’s role in daily New York City life, highlighted by a 2001 abolishment of the Board of Education in favor of the appointed Department of Education.
The Mayor has become known in the Cornell community as the facilitator of the NYC Tech Campus competition, which was won by Cornell - in partnership with the Israel Institute of Technology – last December. It is no secret that Bloomberg and President David Skorton have formed a close relationship throughout the process. According to the Daily Sun, a University statement did not specify the role of this relationship or Cornell’s recent victory in the decision to bring Mayor Bloomberg to campus.
Bringing in a big name like Mayor Bloomberg was made possible, to some extent, by the dollars of all Cornell students, as the convocation committee receives $8.50 in By-Line funding from every undergraduate. In their 2012-2014 report to President Skorton, the Student Assembly announced that this will increase to $10.50 for the next three years, so students should expect prominent speakers in the years to come.
Last December, Mayor Bloomberg was chosen to give the commencement address at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill this May, as well. That announcement received some negative publicity as a group of UNC students protested the decision. They were disappointed with the Mayor’s handling of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Their petition failed to catch much momentum, however, and little has been made of that situation since one Wall Street Journal article early last December.
The University’s 144th Commencement Ceremony will be held on Saturday, May 27, 2012. (UNC’s commencement cermony is two weeks earlier.)