Wes Moore Announced as NEC’s 2021 Commencement Speaker | New England College
Accepted Students Parents and Families Alumni Students, Faculty & Staff

Wes Moore Announced as NEC’s 2021 Commencement Speaker

Combat veteran, best-selling author, and social entrepreneur will speak at a virtual ceremony honoring 2020 and 2021 graduates.

Henniker, N.H. (March 17, 2021) New England College (NEC) announces that Wes Moore will serve as the Commencement speaker at the College’s virtual commencement ceremony on May 8, 2021.

Moore’s professional journey includes serving as a paratrooper and captain in the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne Division; White House Fellow to former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice; author of five books; founder and CEO of BridgeEdu, a tech platform that reinvented the first-year experience for underserved students in order to address the college completion and job placement crisis; and current Chief Executive Officer of Robin Hood in New York City, one of the largest poverty-fighting organizations in the country.

“I often say that while potential is universal, opportunity is not,” Moore comments. “What a delight it is to speak to a college that dedicates itself to not only seeing the potential in students but also helping them make the college opportunity a reality. As these graduates leave New England College for the next chapter in their lives, they will no doubt face challenges, as we all do. But they leave equipped with the education, leadership, and fortitude to rise above.”

And rising above is something Moore himself knows well. Raised by a single mother in Baltimore and the Bronx, Moore overcame childhood challenges and now inspires people to think differently about their own lives, the lives of others, and how the two are connected. His New York Times bestseller The Other Wes Moore tells the story of another young man from the same time and neighborhood—and with the same name—whose life took a very different direction that resulted in a life sentence for murder.

“We are honored to host Wes at this year’s commencement ceremony for New England College,” says Dr. Michele D. Perkins, President of NEC. “He will address our community at a time when there is much work to be done, both at NEC and across America, to heal past hurts, overcome deep divisions and help each other rather than only ourselves. His experiences and personal passions will, no doubt, compel our graduates to take the best of NEC with them and to use the best of themselves to be changemakers in their worlds.”

Moore twice graduated Phi Theta Kappa, from Valley Forge Military College and from Johns Hopkins University. He went on to earn a Master of Letters from Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar.

During NEC’s commencement, Moore will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa, from the College’s Board of Trustees in recognition of his professional success and achievements. The commencement ceremony honoring the graduates of 2020 and 2021 will be held virtually on Saturday, May 8, at 10:00 a.m.