Professional basketball player Jeremy Lin ’10 will give a lecture to the 2021 College Class on this year’s Virtual Class Day on May 26, the University announced on Monday
Harvard announced in February that postpone Graduation exercises and holding a virtual ceremony in May for the second consecutive year in adherence to public health guidelines. The president of the university, Lawrence S. Bacow, has promised to hold a personal celebration for members of the 2021 and 2020 class when it is safe to do so.
Lin is known for being the first American of Chinese or Taiwanese descent to play in the NBA and the first Asian-American to win an NBA championship. As a student at college, where he studied economics, Lin played as a point guard on the men’s basketball team and was the team captain during his senior year. He joined the All-Ivy League team three times.
“I am deeply honored to be invited by the Class of 2021 to speak on Class Day,” Lin said in a press release. “This next generation of leaders is entering the world at an unprecedented time, and they have a lot of potential to help shape a more just and kind society. I am excited to celebrate this moment with them and share all the lessons I have learned since my time at Harvard. “
After not being drafted in the 2010 NBA Draft, Lin catapulted to international prominence when he led the New York Knicks in a winning turnaround in 2012 – a phenomenon dubbed “Linsanity”. Since then, he has played for several other teams in the NBA and the Chinese Basketball Association, and currently plays for the Santa Cruz Warriors of the NBA G League.
Out of court, Lin also used his platform for philanthropy and defense, including donations to Covid-19 nonprofits and speaking out against anti-Asian racism. In 2016, Lin donated $ 1 million to help fund the college’s financial aid program and Harvard basketball arena renovations.
The College’s Senior Class Committee, comprised of fourteen senior class marshals, annually selects a Lecture Day speaker to address undergraduates. Conan C. O’Brien ’85 addressed the 2020 Class during last year’s virtual start activities.
This year’s Virtual Class Day will also feature comments from the Dean of College Rakesh Khurana, the President of the Harvard Alumni Association Vanessa W. Liu ’96 and some student speakers. The university-wide graduation ceremony – featuring Ruth J. Simmons, the president of Prairie View A&M University, as a graduation speaker – will take place the next day, May 27.
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