Mike Pence Commencement Controversy
Notre Dame invites Vice President Mike Pence to speak at graduation to avoid Trump controversy, yet the choice still sparks disapproval from the Notre Dame community.
- University announcement
- On March 2, Notre Dame announced that Vice President Mike Pence will receive an honorary degree and serve as principal speaker at the University's 172nd commencement ceremony May 21 (Sunday). He becomes the first vice president of the United States to deliver the commencement address at Notre Dame.
- “It is fitting that in the 175th year of our founding on Indiana soil that Notre Dame recognize a native son who served our state and now the nation with quiet earnestness, moral conviction and a dedication to the common good characteristic of true statesmen,” said Notre Dame President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C. “With his own brand of reserved dignity, Mike Pence instilled confidence on the state level then, and on the world stage now. We are proud to welcome him to represent the new administration.”
- Negative reactions
- Students and alumni are taking to social media to broadcast their disapproval. Some students have created petitions suggesting
- Many students are personally impacted by the University's decision to invite Pence. The president of the Latino Student Alliance, Xitlaly Estrada, and the president of the Black Student Association, Natalie Thomas, have both spoken out against the choice of Pence.
- While the University refrained from inviting Trump due to his polarizing and harsh beliefs, many students believe that Trump and Pence are one in the same due to their collective views.