Campus News

Jason Gay announced as 2019 winter commencement speaker

UW-Madison Senior Class Officers select Gay as their commencement speaker due to his versatility and light-hearted humour.  

UW-Madison Senior Class Officers select Gay as their commencement speaker due to his versatility and light-hearted humour.  

Image By: Courtesy of UW-Madison

Wall Street Journal sports columnist Jason Gay was announced Wednesday as the 2019 winter commencement.

Gay, who graduated from UW-Madison in 1992 with a political science degree, joked about his confusion when receiving notice he was picked.

"Chancellor Blank must have meant to ask J.J. Watt again," Gay said. "But when she typed in the first 'J,' my name came up in the email address — and she didn't notice until it was too late."

Senior class officers, including Senior Class President Lauren Sorensen, choose a commencement speaker each year and recommend their choice to the Chancellor’s office for the final say.

“Commencement is meant to be fun and enjoyable — a celebration — and we really felt he’d bring a humorous tone.” Sorensen said. “We also felt that he exemplifies the versatility of a Wisconsin education. He’s had this interesting career where he’s gone from political science to sports and humor columnist.”

He reinforced his Badger pride in his Michigan versus Wisconsin Sept. 21 football game coverage headlined, “Yes, to Save the World, Wisconsin Really Needs to Beat Michigan.” 

Graduates of the 2019 winter class and their guests can see Gay’s commencement speech at the Kohl Center beginning 10 a.m. Dec. 15.

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