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Tomlin: 'It's a special day'

Steelers Coach Mike Tomlin is no stranger to commencement addresses, having previously delivered them at his alma mater William & Mary and Saint Vincent College, the summer home of the Steelers.

And with the rave reviews the past ones have received, Robert Morris University is in for a treat.

Tomlin will be the keynote speaker for Robert Morris' commencement ceremony for approximately 200 graduate students on May 5 at the Sewall Center Arena.

"It's always an interesting thought process for me when I think about speaking at a commencement," said Tomlin. "It's a special day in the lives of those people. I want to give them something they can hold on to. I want to challenge them, I want to encourage them, I want to wish them well.

"I want to set a trajectory in their mind as they go out into the work force or the world, that they are capable of realizing their dreams. I get the pleasure in doing what I do, of knowing a lot of people that are living their dreams on a day to day basis. I am going to encourage them to chase theirs and live theirs out."

Tomlin will receive an honorary doctorate in humane letters. Steelers Chairman Dan Rooney and his wife, Patricia, a trustee emerita at Robert Morris University, will receive the same honorary doctorate for their founding and continued support of the Rooney International Visiting Scholars Program at Robert Morris.

Tomlin's speech at Saint Vincent College in 2008 was named by National Public Radio (NPR) as one of the "The Best 300 Commencement Speeches, Ever." That is very high praise considering they went back to speeches from as long ago as 1774, and the list included the likes of Mother Teresa, John F. Kennedy and the Dalai Lama.

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