Speakers for Convocation and Commencement 2013

Academic Convocation Student Speaker:  Isaac Olson ’13, "Everything's Broken: How I Learned to Start Worrying and Love the World"

Isaac Olson, from Evergreen, Colorado, graduated with a major in Religion and a minor in Politics and Government. Isaac’s activities included serving as a campus and community volunteer for the All-City Race and Pedagogy Youth Summit, Long Elementary School Reading Buddies, Youth Against Violence, Justice and Service in Tacoma Club, as an Interfaith Coordinator for Community Service (SSSJ/CIAC), and on the Academic Standards Committee.  He worked for three years as a student patrol officer for Security Services, was an intern at the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies at Georgetown University, was a recipient of a Fred S. Wyatt Scholarship, and was awarded a Chism Scholarship for Summer Research for a project titled “The Retreat of American Evangelicals from Partisan Politics.”

Academic Convocation Faculty Speaker:  Professor Mike Veseth ’72, Robert G. Albertson Professor, International Political Economy Program, “The ‘SoWhat?’ Question”  

Professor Veseth is an authority on economic globalization and teaches IPE classes including The Beautiful Game (about globalization and soccer) and The Idea of Wine.  Mike is the author of many books including Wine Wars: The Curse of the Blue Nun, the Miracle of Two Buck Chuck and the Revenge of the Terroirists (2011) and Globaloney 2.0: The Crash of 2008 and the Future of Globalization (2010).  He writes about global wine for The Wine Economist (WineEconomist.com).  Among Mike’s many honors and awards, he was named in 2010 the Washington Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education.

Student Commencement Speaker: Airiel Quintana ’13, “Pros Ta Akra and Other Puget Sound Prerequisites for Real Life”

Airiel Quintana, from Oakland, California, graduated with a major in Communication Studies and minors in English and African American Studies (for which she is writing an independent thesis on racial disproportionality in special education diagnoses). Airiel’s activities included serving as a Resident Assistant, a College Bound mentor through the Metropolitan Development Council, Co-President of the Communication Studies Student Association, and a member of the Black Student Union. She was a “Keep Living the Dream” awardee, and worked for three years on Theatre/Race and Pedagogy projects including “1620 Bank Street,” Campus Climate Check events, and Suzan-Lori Parks workshops.  Airiel also was part of the Ubiquitous They sketch comedy troupe on campus.