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DePaul University announces 2018 commencement speakers

Dignitaries are Rami Nashashibi, Carol Marin and Edward Grossman

Author Stuart Dybek addresses DePaul graduates during a 2017 commencement ceremony. (DePaul University/Jeff Carrion) 
CHICAGO — DePaul University’s 2018 commencement will celebrate an estimated 6,700 graduating students during six separate ceremonies May 13 and June 9-10. Among the commencement speakers are: community organizer Rami Nashashibi; broadcast journalist Carol Marin; and legal social justice advocate Edward Grossman.

Edward Grossman
DePaul University College of Law alumnus Edward Grossman will address graduates this spring. (Image courtesy of Edward Grossman)
DePaul has a tradition of providing a quality education to students from diverse backgrounds, with particular attention to first-generation college students. For additional information about each of the commencement ceremonies, visit

Edward Grossman brings legal services to marginalized communities
As co-founder of the Chicago Legal Clinic, Edward Grossman has devoted his life to providing access to legal services for marginalized people in Chicago’s low-income communities. In 1981, Grossman was a young attorney who just earned a Juris Doctor from DePaul’s College of Law. He partnered with a classmate to create a clinic that offered accessible, affordable and bilingual legal services to residents of South Chicago. Since then, the clinic has served nearly a half million people. Under Grossman’s leadership, the clinic has been a pioneer in urban environmental law, fighting to reduce pollution threats in impoverished neighborhoods.

Grossman’s dedication to his work and the people he serves has earned him a Justice John Paul Stevens Award from the Chicago Bar Association in 2015. Over the years, Grossman has been a mentor and advisor to young attorneys, employed interns at the clinic and remained dedicated to his alma mater by serving on the DePaul College of Law Dean’s Advisory Council since 1997. Grossman will speak at the College of Law commencement ceremony.

Rami Nashashibi
DePaul alumnus Rami Nashashibi will address graduates during a 2018 commencement ceremony. (MacArthur Foundation/Jean-Marc Giboux)
Rami Nashashibi confronts inequality
After graduating from DePaul as a double major in international studies and English, Rami Nashashibi launched a career in service and became a nationally recognized community organizer and faith-based activist. His work in Chicago and Atlanta confronts the challenges of poverty and disinvestment in urban communities. In 1997, Nashashibi founded the Inner-City Muslim Action Network, a nonprofit dedicated to organizing for social change, cultivating the arts, fostering health and wellness, and building bridges among marginalized communities. IMAN is located in Chicago Lawn, an ethnically and religiously diverse neighborhood that suffers from high rates of home foreclosure, unemployment and gang violence.

Under Nashashibi’s leadership, IMAN helps citizens returning from prison by offering job training and brings much-needed access to psychological and medical care. In recognition of his work, the MacArthur Foundation named Nashashibi a 2017 MacArthur Fellow. Nashashibi will speak at a combined ceremony for the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences and the School for New Learning. He will receive an honorary degree from DePaul at the ceremony.

Carol Marin
Carol Marin will address DePaul graduates from the College of Communication and the College of Computing and Digital Media. (Linda Schwartz for NBC News)
Carol Marin champions journalistic integrity
As a broadcast reporter, political columnist and national correspondent, Carol Marin established herself as a Chicago household name for her unwavering commitment to journalistic integrity. She began her decades-long role as a primetime news anchor for WMAQ-TV (NBC 5) in 1978. She moved to CBS News in 1997 and worked as an investigative reporter for WBBM-TV (CBS 2) and as a national correspondent for “60 Minutes.” Marin and fellow producer Don Moseley brought their skills to DePaul University in 2003 and founded the DePaul Documentary Project to teach students how to report and produce broadcast news magazine-quality pieces.

In 2016, Marin and Moseley became the founding co-directors of the Center for Journalism Integrity and Excellence in DePaul’s College of Communication. The center teaches students how to conduct investigative journalism while adhering to the highest principles of journalism, including truth, accuracy, fairness and context. Marin has won numerous local Emmys, was inducted into the Chicago Journalism Hall of Fame in 1992, and in 2002, included in the Silver Circle of the Chicago/Midwest chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. She received an honorary degree from DePaul in 1998. Marin will speak at the combined ce​remony for the College of Communication and the College of Computing and Digital Media.

About DePaul University
DePaul is the largest Catholic university in the United States and the largest private, nonprofit university in the Midwest, with nearly 23,000 students and a wide range of academic and professional programs.

DePaul was founded in Chicago in 1898 by the Congregation of the Mission (Vincentians), a Roman Catholic religious community dedicated to following the ideals of St. Vincent de Paul, the 17th century priest for whom the university is named. More information is at


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