NYU Wagner Convocation Ceremony



2015 NYU Wagner Convocation
Tuesday May 19, 2015
10:00am - 12:00pm
New York City Center, 131 West 55th Street, New York, NY 10019 
Graduate arrival: no later than 8:30am. Doors open for guests: 9:15am.


Graduate Reception
Tuesday May 19, 2015
3:00pm - 5:00pm
The Puck Building, 295 Lafayette Street, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10012
Graduates and their families are invited to the Puck  Building for a casual afternoon of mingling with faculty and staff as they say farewell to Wagner. Light refreshments and snacks will be served.


Keynote Speaker: NYU Wagner is proud to present Cody Keenan as the 2015 Convocation Keynote Speaker.


Cody Keenan is Assistant to the President and Director of Speechwriting at the White House, where he oversees all public remarks for President Barack Obama.

In college, Cody’s ever-changing interests led him to a variety of jobs, from a hot dog cart in New England to a tech company in Spain. But it wasn’t until after his graduation from Northwestern University that he would choose public service, and chase an unpaid internship in the office of Senator Edward M. Kennedy–a decision that would change the course of his life.

Within three years, Cody worked his way up from the mailroom to Kennedy’s legendary legislative staff, where he worked on a wide range of areas from health care to education, inequality to immigration, mental health to disability policy. He then left to earn his Master’s Degree in Public Policy at Harvard University, fully intending to return to Kennedy’s staff–until circumstance led him to the small speechwriting team of a startup presidential campaign in his hometown of Chicago.

Eight years later, Cody is chief speechwriter at the White House, where he has helped President Obama craft speeches on every topic for every audience–from tiny backyards in Iowa to the biggest stadiums in the country; from eulogies in Tucson and Newtown to a celebration in Selma; from sermons on the National Mall to the State of the Union Address. An eternal optimist, he still believes that within the next two years, the Chicago Cubs will bring a World Series trophy to the White House. He has seen more improbable things.