Sarah Beth Costello
March 30, 2009
On April 7, Elon University will host CNN’s news anchor, Anderson Cooper, for a question-and-answer session in Whitley Auditorium and a lecture in Koury Center’s Alumni Gym. Cooper is a well-known and successful broadcast and print journalist as well as an author and the host of “Anderson Cooper 360.”
“The idea to invite Cooper may have originated when (President Leo) Lambert met with some SGA students,” said George Troxler, dean of Cultural and Special Programs. When asked who would be a good speaker to bring to campus, the students agreed Cooper would be an ideal choice, he said.
“It’s very difficult to book (Cooper),” Troxler said. “They said it’s very unlikely that he would be able to come.”
Despite the difficulty in booking a visit with Cooper, a date was eventually confirmed late last year after Dr. Lambert wrote a letter stressing Elon’s strong communications program. “Anderson Cooper comes when he comes,” Troxler said. “We even offered a private plane that will enable him to return to New York that night. We made it as convenient for him as possible.”
Troxler said the contract contains a clause that excuses Cooper from visiting campus in the case of a huge event. As of now, Cooper is still on schedule to visit Elon next week and the event is highly anticipated, especially among communications students.
“I think it’s a great opportunity that Elon is bringing him here. I think it’s awesome, especially being with Phoenix 14,” said junior Shea Northcut, who is majoring in broadcast journalism. Cooper will discuss current events during his lecture next week and will also touch on his experience covering past events.
Cooper studied political science and international relations at Yale University, but decided to pursue a career in journalism despite his lack of training in the field. Before anchoring for CNN, Cooper was an anchor for Channel One News and later ABC. He also traveled the world reporting international stories.