Katie Couric Can't Stop Repeating Herself in Commencement Speeches

In 2012, CNN host Fareed Zakaria took to the commencement circuit delivering nearly-identical speeches at Harvard and Duke. A New York magazine took notice and wondered if these carbon-copied addresses could serve as “a meta-lesson for the kids on how, unlike in college, people get away with phoning it in once they've reached a certain level of success?”

This year, it’s happening again. This past weekend, Katie Couric delivered her second and final commencement address of the season and rehashed the same laments about supposedly sexist critics who never took her seriously as a journalist. Not one to disappoint, she made sure to re-use her "Latin for testicles" joke.


On Sunday, Couric addressed the Class of 2014 of Trinity College in Connecticut. That happens to be, by the way, her fiance’s alma mater. Couric started off by praising Trinity and sharing her fiance’s love of the institution. She urged graduates to “love what you do” and shared a story of her fiance’s failure and triumph in the workforce that led to his success.

Halfway through her address, Couric began to share her life experiences. It will come as no surprise to NewsBusters readers that Couric discussed her career by essentially whining about her detractors. As documented last week, Couric has a few one-liners she just can’t seem to get through an entire speech without using. This commencement address was no different.

While telling graduates of her decision to go into television news she noted that it was tough getting started in the business when "harass was considered two words instead of one," a line borrowed from both her 2012 address at UVA and most recently, at American University earlier this month.

Of course, no Couric commencement address would be complete without a rehashing of her time at the anchor desk of the CBS Evening News. Same as her previous commencement addresses Couric lamented:

When I became the anchor of the CBS Evening news, the first woman to do so alone, the critics were harsh and unrelenting in my first few months on the job. They complained about my hair, my make up, my clothes, my delivery, even the way I held my hands.

Couric of course could not go without dropping what seems to be her favorite one-liner:

Some claimed I lacked gravitas, which I decided is Latin for testicles!

To be fair, Couric is delivering these addresses to separate institutions, but is it really that difficult to come up with any new material? After all, if the graduates she's trying to inspire were expected to avoid plagiarizing themselves and not recycle their papers throughout their college years, shouldn't the same be expected of their commencement speaker?
 

Couric's full speech can be viewed on YouTube.

Jackie Seal
Jackie Seal is a 2014 summer intern with the MRC's News Analysis Division.