Media advisory: Yale University’s 313th Commencement events to be held May 18 and 19

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Yale University’s 313th Commencement will take place on May 19. United States Secretary of State John Kerry ’66 will be the featured speaker at the 2014 Yale College Class Day exercises on May 18.

All members of the media must display Yale press credentials during Commencement and Class Day. Security will be inspecting all bags. Credentials are required for access to the media platform on Old Campus. Requests should be emailed to [email protected]. Reserved credentials must be picked up 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Tuesday-Friday, May 13-16 at the Office of Public Affairs and Communications (OPAC), 2 Whitney Grove Square, Suite 330, corner of Whitney and Grove streets, 203-432-1345.

Class Day, featuring Kerry’s talk, begins at 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 18. The Commencement procession begins at 10 a.m. on Monday, May 19.

Watch Class Day and Commencement live on the Yale YouTube channel.

Follow Yale on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for images and stories about the weekend’s activities, including a Baccalaureate Address by Salovey, a reception for parents and graduates, and much more. Use the hashtag #Yale2014 on Twitter, and on Instagram to share your photos and impressions. Follow @Yale for live tweets from Class Day and Commencement. Email photos you’d like to share on the Yale Facebook page to [email protected].

Download images of Commencement 2014 taken by Yale photographers during and after the weekend on our Flickr page.

Stay connected to Commencement information on your smartphones and tablets by linking to the Yale Commencement site, which will have full schedules and additional information.

Sunday, May 18: Yale College Baccalaureate, 11 a.m.

Members of the media are welcome to attend the Baccalaureate service for Yale College seniors and their families at 11 a.m. on Sunday, May 18. The ceremony, which features addresses by President Peter Salovey and Yale College Dean Mary Miller, will take place in Woolsey Hall, northwest corner of Grove and College streets. Space for camera crews is available on a first-come, first-served basis, and must be reserved by Friday, May 16 at 5 p.m. by contacting the Yale Office of Public Affairs and Communications via email: [email protected]. Media may cover the ceremony from the rear of the balcony in Woolsey Hall. Camera crews must be positioned before the service begins and are asked to remain in place until the end of the event, which lasts about 90 minutes.

Yale College Class Day, 2 p.m.

Members of the media are invited to register for press credentials to attend Class Day on Old Campus, bordered by Chapel, College, Elm, and High streets. This year the speaker will be U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. (see accompanying bio).

Class Day traditions include awarding academic prizes to students, a class history video, planting the Class Ivy, reciting the Ivy Ode, and singing Yale’s alma mater, “Bright College Years,” while waving a white handkerchief.

Media should use the High Street gate closest to Elm Street to enter Old Campus and access the media platform. This is the same gate used to accommodate guests with disabilities or special needs. OPAC staff will be at the gate and on the platform to assist media members.

There will be a mult-box for radio/television crews.

Monday, May 19: University Commencement, 10 a.m.

Media should use the High Street gate closest to Elm Street to access the media platform on Old Campus.

All media photographers, reporters, and television camera crews must cover Commencement from the news media platform, where video and audio feeds will be available. Access to the platform requires a Yale media credential.

Biography of John Kerry

John Kerry was sworn in as the 68th secretary of state of the United States on Feb. 1, 2013, becoming the first sitting Senate Foreign Relations Committee chair to be named to that post in over a century.

Shortly before he graduated from Yale in 1966, Kerry enlisted in the U.S. Navy, and completed two tours of duty. He served in combat as a Swift Boat skipper, patrolling the rivers of the Mekong Delta. He returned home from Vietnam with a Silver Star, a Bronze Star with Combat V, and three Purple Hearts.

Back in the United States, Kerry began to speak out against the Vietnam War. He co-founded the Vietnam Veterans of America, and as a U.S. senator, fought to secure veterans’ benefits, extension of the G.I. Bill for Higher Education, and improved treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder.

In 1976, Kerry received his law degree from Boston College Law School and went to work as a top prosecutor in Middlesex County, Massachusetts. He was elected lieutenant governor of Massachusetts in 1982, and two years later, he was elected to the U.S. Senate where he served for 28 years, the last four as chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

He also chaired the Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs; held senior positions on the Finance, Commerce, and Small Business committees; and served as a member of the bipartisan Joint Committee on Deficit Reduction. When Kerry left the Senate for the State Department, he was the seventh-most-senior senator.

Kerry was the Democratic Party’s nominee for president of the United States in 2004.

The Yale alumnus is the author of best-selling books, including “A Call to Service: My Vision for a Better America” and “This Moment on Earth,” which he co-authored with his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry.

Helpful links to Yale Commencement information:


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