IC Celebrates the Class of 2017

When Bill D’Elia ’69 spoke at IC’s 122nd Commencement on May 21, he urged the 1,360 graduates to pattern their lives to fulfill who they are, instead of patterning their lives to fit a role they think they want. The television-radio major has applied his skills to such shows as How to Get Away with Murder, Glee, Grey’s Anatomy, and The West Wing.

The eight-time Emmy Award nominee told graduates that the road before them will start out long and wide. But each decision made may ultimately shorten and constrict their pathways, if they let it.

“Life will conspire to make you less. Your job—your real job—is to conspire to make you more,” he said. “Push back on that narrow road.”

Honorary degrees were awarded to two individuals dedicated to fostering dialogue on difficult issues. Ann Thompson Cook is cofounder of Many Voices: A Black Church Movement for LGBTQ Justice, and she has served as president and CEO of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. La June Montgomery Tabron is president and CEO of the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, which is dedicated to ensuring that children and families in all communities have the opportunities they need to reach their full potential, regardless of race or income.