Grammy Winner John Legend to Speak at UPenn Commencement

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Music legend John Legend will speak at UPenn's graduation ceremony. (Published Tuesday, Feb 18, 2014)

    Nine-time Grammy winner John Legend will likely give a lift to graduates of the University of Pennsylvania this spring.
     
    School officials announced Tuesday that Legend will speak at his alma mater's 258th commencement on May 19.

    "He provides us all with a striking example of the positive impact that Penn grads have in engaging with their community, beginning remarkably early in their careers," said Penn President Amy Gutmann in a news release.

    Legend was known as John Stephens when he attended the Ivy League school. He graduated in 1999 with a bachelor's degree in English and a concentration in African-American literature and culture.

    While enrolled, Legend recorded his own albums and served as musical director and president of the University's coed a cappella jazz group, Counterparts.

    In 2007 he launched the Show Me Campaign, an organization that works to break the cycle of poverty by providing access to quality education internationally.

    The musician released his platinum-selling debut album "Get Lifted'' in 2004. Legend is currently touring the U.S. in support of his recording "Love in the Future.''
     
    He'll receive an honorary doctorate in music at the ceremony.
     
    When asked if Legend will perform at the event, a university spokeswoman replied via email: "Probably not."