During his six-day visit to Ireland, US Vice President Joe Biden will be awarded an honorary doctorate, alongside several other nominees, from Trinity College Dublin this Friday, June 24th.
The Commencement Ceremony will take place at 11am this Friday in Trinity’s Public Theatre. Biden will also receive a Gold Medal of Honorary Patronage from the University Philosophical Society and is expected to make a short speech at both events.
Biden has been Vice President since 2009 under both of Barack Obama’s administrations. His strong stance on gun control – especially after the shooting in Orlando earlier this month – as well as his foreign policy in Iraq has distinguished Biden in his role as Vice President and as a popular name in US politics. Consequently he was projected to run for the Democratic Party’s 2016 presidential nomination, but the death of his son late last year to cancer forced him to chose family over politics. Throughout his political career Biden has also celebrated his Irish heritage as his grandfather emigrated from Ireland to the US.
Other nominees are Nobel Laureate Peter Higgs (creator of the ‘Higgs Boson’ machine), Irish novelist JP Donleavy, civil rights activist and lawyer Hina Jilani and novelist Lia Mills. They will join previous leaders in academia, politics, business, arts and culture such as Nelson Mandela, Mikhail Gorbachev and David Attenborough, who Trinity has awarded honorary doctorates for their contribution to society. Trinity’s oldest student Joe Veselsky will also be presented an Honorary Master of Arts Degree at the ceremony.