Former Vice President Al Gore will speak to the Class of 2014 at this year’s Class Day, the University announced Friday.
Gore, who served as Vice President for President Bill Clinton from 1993 to 2001, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007 for his activism on climate change.
“We were very excited when Al Gore accepted our invitation to speak at Class Day,” Class Day co-chair Alisa Tiwari ’14 said in an interview. “He is an inspirational leader who has had a profound impact on the world that we live in. As a result, we felt that he would be an ideal person to join us as we both celebrate our achievements at Princeton and consider our lives after college.”
In an email to the class of 2014, Class Day co-chairs Taylor Francis ’14, Tiwari and Teddy Schleifer ’14 noted Gore’s public service, work with climate change and breadth of leadership as reasons for asking him to speak.
Schleifer is a former News Editor for The Daily Princetonian.
“Our view is that Class Day is a day for our class to celebrate our time at Princeton and also to reflect on how we can lead lives of meaning and purpose after we graduate,” Francis said in an interview. “We were deeply compelled by Al Gore’s experience as a public servant, a citizen and a leader, and we’re thrilled that he’ll bring that to Class Day.”
Francis noted that Gore was a good candidate since his experience spans many different fields through his career as a politician, advocate and author. Francis said that the committee hopes that Gore’s diversity of experience will speak to the many different passions of the Class of 2014.
While the committee did not give Gore guidelines on what to talk about in his speech, Tiwari said that they hope that he will share his perspectives on how the graduates can work to address the challenges facing their generation.
“So far I think that our class has responded really positively,” Tiwari said. “I think that people are generally excited that we’ll be able to share this special time at Princeton with someone who has had such a profound impact on the world that we live in.”
Prior to serving as Vice President, Gore served as Senator from 1985 to 1993 and as Congressman from 1977 to 1985. He was awarded the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize jointly with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change for his activism regarding climate change, and his campaign for global warming education is the subject of the 2006 Academy Award-winning documentary “An Inconvenient Truth.”
Gore could not be reached for comment.
Class Day will take place on June 2, after the conclusion of Reunions weekend and one day before Commencement. Pulitzer Prize-winning author and editor of The New Yorker David Remnick ’81 spoke last year to the Class of 2013, and comedian Steve Carell spoke to the Class of 2012.