J.K. Rowling to Receive Honorary Degree at Harvard Today

104

Jun 05, 2008

Posted by SueTLC
Uncategorized

As noted previously, J.K. Rowling will be giving the commencement address at Harvard University today at 2:30pm (EST). The Harvard Crimson has a preview of the event, and notes that the Harry Potter author will also be receiving an honorary degree today. The paper, which also has a new photo of Jo at a special reception at Harvard’s Loeb house last night, cites reps who are looking forward to the speech from J.K. Rowling.

Comparing Rowling to yesterday’s Class Day speaker, Federal Reserve Chair Ben S. Bernanke ’75, Professor Maria Tatar, who teaches a course on childhood, said she thinks Rowling will deliver “a witty, inspiring talk that steers clear of the subprime crisis and gas prices but will still engage with tough, real-world issues.”

“Just because she’s not doing the nitty-gritty of the economy or politics doesn’t mean that she’s not bringing something to the table that’s very powerful’ the former dean for the humanities said. At a Class of 2008 dinner two days ago, parents debated copyright issues as students nearby speculated about Rowling’s next project, Tatar said, adding that the writer has “cross-generational appeal.”

“Commencement should be a sort of family-friendly time to think about imagination as well as the economy’ she said.

On a related note, the Glasgow Daily Record is reporting that fans are paying big money for tickets to the event that are normally free to students and graduates of Harvard. The paper says: HARRY Potter fans are paying up to £100 for “free” tickets on the black market to hear JK Rowling speak in America today.

The author is making a special transatlantic trip to talk for 20 minutes to around 20,000 of the brightest and best students in the US and their families.”





22 Responses to J.K. Rowling to Receive Honorary Degree at Harvard Today

Avatar Image says:

Very intresting. Any chance it will be filmed, or was that just a rumor do you think? A transcript? Anything? :) I hope that anyone attending had a great time.

Avatar Image says:

There has to be some justice in the world when a “children’s book” author can command $200 a ticket on the black market for a commencement speech! It’s a good bet most of the audience will have read at least some of the Potter books. They are the right age group. If I were graduating Harvard today I would rather listen to Jo than the Fed Chairman!

Avatar Image says:

This ranks, right up there, with some of the most prestigious honours given to Jo, so far! I would love to have a copy of her speech, but truly, I think this moment belongs to the Students, Faculty and Families of Harvard. It is sure to be a wonderful and insightful address, as we all know, only JKR can make! Congratulations, Graduates of Harvard and congratulations JKR for giving of your time and inspiration! That’s why we love you! [‘Hermione’ would be proud!] Sign me: an equally Proud Gryffindor!

Avatar Image says:

I’m sorry, but I burst out laughing when I saw Ben Bernanke spoke, too. Seeing Harry Potter connected with the Federal Reserve chair after Neil Cicierega and Ryan Murphy’s Ben Bernanke video is just priceless.

Avatar Image says:

I am an undergrad at Harvard and we are all really excited that she is here! My friends and I have been trying to figure out if she would visit any place of significance here…(our bookstore “The Coop” or libraries or houses…) Unfortunately I can’t attend the ceremony either, but it is definitely an exciting time for everyone here. I am not sure, but past speeches have been available post-commencement but I am not sure if you have to have to be an affiliate to access it. If nothing else, I am pretty darn sure it will end up on youtube.com.

Avatar Image says:

Didn’t Leaky say that it’s being transmitted live on the net?

Does anyone know when 2:30 EST is for BST?

p.s. Could an American explain what the difference is between commencement and graduation? Is it the same thing? Surely they should be opposites haha!

Avatar Image says:

Black market? Wow LOL its times like this that I love the craziness of our fandom, We love our Jo!

XD

Avatar Image says:

I would pay $200 to see JKR speak live. I wish I didn’t live 2,000 miles away or I would actually do it.

Becca, commencement is just a formal name for the actual graduation ceremony.

Avatar Image says:

Thanks Cromer! Why is it called that then? Graduation is the end!

Avatar Image says:

I’m going and I can’t wait. A couple more hours…

Avatar Image says:

At my University we refer to it as commencement because achieving your degree is a beginning of a new chapter. We believe that your education never ends you simply begin learning in a different way.

Avatar Image says:

@undergrad

No doubt she’ll be stopping off at ‘The Greenhouse’ in Harvard Square for a piece of that outstanding German chocolate cake.

OMT

Avatar Image says:

Becca

Commencement and graduation are the same thing. They call it commencement as it should be looked at as a new beginnning, not as the end.

Man, I can’t wait to watch this later today. I really wish I went to Harvard.

Avatar Image says:

I wouldn’t exactly say you are definitely the brightest or ‘best’ student if you go to Harvard, just that your family probably has a lot of money. Also, being the ‘best’ school is entirely subjective, going to a small school like I do I feel is the best choice for me because you get a more personal education, however someone going to a larger school might feel that was the best choice for them for whatever reasons. Sorry, it just irks me when schools like Harvard think they’re better than everyone else when there are other great schools out there as well.

Avatar Image says:

btw I make no offense at Harvard, I have friends that go there after all and it is a very good school with many gifted students just as many other schools have. just making a statement.

Avatar Image says:

I would also pay 200$ to see Jo personally in a nice reunion togehter with ohter to talk about HP.

Lucky guys in Harvard

Avatar Image says:

Becca, EST is 5 hours behind BST so we’ll be able to watch it at 7.30pm

Avatar Image says:

I’m on campus right now, with my free ticket. Woo-hoo!!

Avatar Image says:

@ Billy

Students at Harvard may come from all economic groups. Harvard has a “need based” admissions. After you are accepted, Harvard provides a financial aid package that is tailored to the resources of the family of the student. If the family does not wish to participate, that’s another question. I sent my daughter there, and although it was a burden, I could do it, and I did.

In other words, If you measure up to the admissions standards, Harvard will see to it that it’s affordable.

And yes, there a lot of great colleges and universites. My daughter applied to 23!!!!!. She was offered a full scholarship to at least one, and turned it down to go to Harvard. It was her choice.

BTW, Harvard does not offer academic scholarships.

OMT

Avatar Image says:

@ OMT:

Sadly, the Greenhouse Cafe in the Square seems to be no longer. But maybe she found Cafe Pamplona? I think she’d like that one, as they’re the kind of place where people sit and write.

Avatar Image says:

I think it’s rather ironic, given that after years and years of writing the HP books she didn’t get to do a Hogwarts graduation ceremony and yet here she’s speaking at a grad ceremony for Harvard!

Come to think of it they should give Harry the degree, since he never got one from Hogwarts!

Avatar Image says:

BEN BERNANKE, SPENCAHHH.

Sorry, it had to be said. I’m immeasurably thrilled that Hufflepuff Lady also referenced Ryan Murphy and Neil Cicierega’s epic “Ben Bernanke.” I’m sorry, but I’m just a little too obsessed with that song/video/whatever. (And I still think the kid who plays Ben Bernanke in that video reminds me of Cedric Diggory/Robert Pattinson in a long wig.)

All crazed youtube fangirling aside… This is really cool, though. Just another incentive for doing well in school and getting into a great college… you get to hear JK Rowling speak… Oh well, at least there’s the internet.

Write a Reply or Comment

Finding Hogwarts

The Leaky Cauldron is not associated with J.K. Rowling, Warner Bros., or any of the individuals or companies associated with producing and publishing Harry Potter books and films.