Tavis Smiley wraps up Drexel ceremonies

Samantha Wishart, 23, of Marlton, gets her photo taken by her mother, Carol Tarbutton, at the ceremony in West Philadelphia.
Samantha Wishart, 23, of Marlton, gets her photo taken by her mother, Carol Tarbutton, at the ceremony in West Philadelphia.
Posted: June 16, 2013

Television and radio host Tavis Smiley wrapped up Drexel University's 2013 commencement exercises with an address Saturday afternoon to graduates of Drexel's Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts and Design and College of Arts and Sciences.

Starting Friday, more than 5,000 undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral students received degrees from the West Philadelphia institution during five ceremonies in the John A. Daskalakis Athletic Center at 33d and Market Streets.

Smiley, host of the late-night television talk show Tavis Smiley on PBS and two shows on public radio, was among 13 who received honorary degrees.

Others included Buzz Bissinger, author, former Inquirer reporter, and Pulitzer Prize winner; Charles E. Haldeman Jr., chief executive officer of the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp., known as Freddie Mac; and Marc Vetri, Italian-trained chef and Philadelphia restaurateur, who was named one of Food & Wine's Ten Best New Chefs and who in 2005 won the James Beard Award for Best Chef Mid-Atlantic.

Bissinger and Haldeman spoke Saturday morning at the ceremony for graduates of the LeBow College of Business.

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