Olympic gold medalist Dan Jansen has been selected as speaker for Plymouth State University’s commencement. The ceremony will take place on Saturday, May 22, 2004. Jansen took home the gold and set a new world record for the men’s 1,000 meter speed skating at the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway.
Jansen was a four time member of the United States’ Olympic delegation, competing in 1984, 1988, 1992 and 1994. He has won 20 World Championship medals and over 50 World Cup medals. In addition to his skating, he is the founder of the Dan Jansen Foundation, an organization which supports youth in athletics and research on leukemia, the disease which claimed the life of his sister.
Jansen was chosen to speak because of his accomplishments and positive message. “Dan Jansen did not give up on achieving his dreams, even in the face of great adversity,” noted Senior Class Treasurer Tim Carrigan. “He persevered and eventually achieved his ultimate goal of winning an Olympic gold medal. We (the selection committee) feel that this uplifting message will inspire our classmates to achieve their own dreams after graduation.”
The commencement speaker selection committee included Senior Class President Laura Brusseau, Vice President Brandice Bobusia, Secretary Keri Harrington, Carrigan, Member-at-Large Andrew Wilkins and Senior Class Advisor Tracie Massey. For more information regarding this year’s commencement ceremony, contact Faith Northrop at (603) 535-2450.