Longtime U.S. Senator Ben Cardin Named Speaker for Hood College’s 2024 Commencement Ceremony

Cardin has represented Maryland for three terms in the U.S. Senate and before that in the U.S. House of Representatives and Maryland General Assembly

Hood College is proud to announce U.S. Senator Ben Cardin as the featured speaker for the Class of 2024 Commencement Ceremony. The ceremony, to be held on Saturday, May 18, is the 127th in Hood’s history.

Senator Ben Cardin
Senator Ben Cardin

A third-generation Marylander and dedicated public servant, Senator Cardin is a consensus builder with a well-earned reputation as a national leader on healthcare, retirement security and the environment as well as human and civil rights. He currently serves as chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

“I am looking forward to Commencement and making Hood College my alma mater,” said Noah Turner, president of the Class of 2024. "We are grateful to have Senator Cardin speaking at our ceremony as we celebrate the end of this chapter of our lives and begin an exciting new one.”

“It is our honor to have Senator Cardin as our Commencement speaker” said Andrea E. Chapdelaine, Ph.D., president of Hood College. “Senator Cardin’s commitment to public service and dedication to fostering a better future reflect Hood’s core value. Senator Cardin has been a champion for higher education and has been a consistent advocate and supporter for Hood, positively impacting our students.”

“I am looking forward to standing with the incredible students of Hood College. This is a special time for you, full of boundless potential and opportunities. I appreciate all the hard work, dedication and sacrifices that have helped each student reach this milestone,” said Senator Cardin. 

Senator Cardin is a strident defender of the Chesapeake Bay and has been a leader on federal policies to improve our economy and the environment, create job opportunities, make college more affordable and support small businesses. He has taken the lead on reviving the Equal Rights Amendment, believes affordable, quality healthcare is a right of all Americans and has secured resources to fix Maryland’s transportation and water infrastructure. He has worked to ensure human rights and anti-corruption measures are integrated into America’s foreign policy.

Senator Cardin’s political career began after being elected to the Maryland House of Delegates in 1966, while he was still in law school. He was named the Speaker of the Maryland House in 1979 and served in that role until his election to Congress as a member of the House of Representatives in 1986. Twenty years later, in 2006, Cardin was elected to represent the State of Maryland as U.S. Senator, a position he was reelected to in 2012 and 2018. 

In May 2023, Senator Cardin announced that he would not seek reelection at the end of his current term, concluding a career spanning 58 years across state and federal politics.In Cardin’s more than half-century as an elected official, he never lost an election.

In addition to his elected positions, Cardin practiced law in Maryland until 1978. He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a Bachelor of Arts, cum laude. Cardin then earned a Juris Doctor from the University of Maryland School of Law in 1967, graduating first in his class, before being admitted to the Maryland Bar. 

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