Shriver to be Annenberg grad speaker

Former First Lady of California and journalist Maria Shriver will speak at the Annenberg Communication Commencement on May 11 at 10:45 a.m. in McCarthy Quad, after the USC commencement ceremony.

Larry Gross, vice dean, School of Communication director and professor, said Shriver’s speech will be inspiring and relevant to graduating communication students at USC.

“We’re very pleased that she’s agreed to come and speak,” Gross said. “She’s been devoted to improving possibilities and careers for women, particularly in communications, and that applies to a lot of our graduates.”

In addition to serving as California’s First Lady from 2003 to 2010, Shriver is a Peabody- and Emmy Award-winning journalist and producer, and authored six New York Times bestselling books. She is also an advocate for people with intellectual disabilities and has worked to raise awareness about Alzheimer’s disease.

In 2009, Shriver partnered with the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism’s Center on Communication Leadership and Policy and other organizations to launch The Shriver Report: A Women’s Nation Changes Everything, a study that reveals women’s progress in the workforce and its impact on American society.

Elizabeth Krane, a senior majoring in communications looks forward to hearing what Shriver has to say.

“I’ve heard of her, but I don’t really know much about her. I’m sure she will [have something valuable to say],” Krane said.

Kristy Pyke, a senior majoring in public relations, said that Shriver is an inspiration for women in communication.

“It is an honor to have such a strong-willed, inspirational woman like Maria Shriver as our commencement speaker,” Pyke said. “She has truly come to represent the modern day woman, and I am thrilled to hear what advice she has to give my graduating class.”

Journalist Christiane Amanpour is the speaker for the journalism and public relations ceremony.