Mass Media dean is HU Opening Convocation speaker

By Janiece Peterson

Hampton University will be welcoming Brett Pulley, dean of Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications, as the speaker for the 70th Annual Opening Convocation on Sunday, Sept. 30.

Pulley returned to Hampton University on Jan. 1, after serving as a senior editor at Forbes magazine. He has a bachelor’s degree from Hampton University, and a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University.

“It feels great to be the speaker for the opening convocation this year,” said Pulley. “It is an honor for me in many regards, and humbling given that I have just returned to the university earlier this year.”

As a graduate of the Class of 1980 graduate, Pulley said he knows what it is like to be in the shoes of many seniors here at Hampton. “I’ve been out there on the front lines of industry. This is an opportunity for me to share a pearl of wisdom, and I never imagined that I would have a chance like this to speak to students.”

In Pulley’s speech for the 70th convocation, he hopes to be able to provide many seniors with information that will be beneficial to them as they begin to make their transition into the industry.

“What I would like to convey through my speech is the idea that students should use this school year as a time to really tap into their potential,” Pulley said.

The theme for this year’s Opening Convocation speech will be on how students should unleash the genius that is within them.

“I wanted to have a theme that will be able to inform and remind [individuals] the kind of value that is being created by young people like themselves,” Pulley said. “They should take this year to become more aware of the value that they can create as they become professionals.”

Pulley worked at the New York Times for five years as a national correspondent and as a local reporter. His work at the Times was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

He also has worked at the Wall Street Journal as a correspondent, where he was based in Chicago and New York.  Pulley has received numerous journalism awards for his work within the industry.

Serving as a member of the board of trustees at Hampton University, Pulley has also delivered a speech at Hampton University’s 117th Annual Founder’s Day in 2010.

Opening Convocation will be held on Ogden Hall and will begin at 10:45 a.m. The event is free and open to the public.

The writer is a student at the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications