iHeartMedia’s latest new podcast is an effort to recapture a note of normalcy for students. The new show is titled Commencement: Speeches for the Class of 2020. Each episode will feature insights and advice from celebrity speakers aimed at high school and college students who will not have graduation ceremonies because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Because so many schools and colleges have moved to online learning to ensure the safety of their students, many graduates are missing their commencement ceremonies, traditionally such significant milestones in their lives,” iHeartPodcast Network President Conal Byrne said. “High school and college seniors are always in need of inspiration, reassurance and life advice as they head into the next chapter of their lives, and that is especially true this year. Speeches for the Class Of 2020 brings together some of the most experienced and inspiring people in the country today to celebrate the resilience, strength and accomplishments of this year’s graduates. These are the speakers our graduates would have had at their real-world ceremonies if not for current circumstances, and we couldn’t be more excited to bring them together through this podcast.”
The podcast will be available on iHeartRadio and other podcast platforms. Each of the speeches will also be featured on iHeartMedia broadcast radio stations. Speeches will be published on May 15 to coincide with the usual time for graduation ceremonies.
iHeartMedia assembled an all-star lineup of speakers from music, movies, politics, business, and sports for this project. These speakers include former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Olympic gold medalist and FIFA World Cup champion Abby Wamback, recording artist and activist John Legend, award-winning journalist Katie Couric, and journalist and NPR correspondent Guy Raz. Some of iHeartRadio’s notable personalities are also contributing, such as Ryan Seacreat, Enrique Santos, Bobby Bones, Jake Brennan, and Angela Yee.