SALT LAKE CITY — Ben Nemtin, a New York Times best-selling author and star of MTV’s “The Buried Life,” will deliver the University of Utah's 2018 commencement address May 3.
General commencement exercises will be held at 6:30 p.m. in the Jon M. Huntsman Center on the U. campus. The event is free and open to the public.
Nemtin won acclaim for setting off on a journey to complete a list of "100 things to do before you die." He and his friends embarked on a two-week trip with a camera and a borrowed RV to complete the list. For each item they accomplished, they helped a stranger cross something off his or her list.
“Graduation is a gateway with paths leading in every direction,” he said in a statement. “Many struggle answering the question, ‘Where do I go from here?’ I am deeply honored to have this opportunity to speak at the University of Utah’s commencement ceremony and share how I answer that question.”
Nemtin and his friends have completed nearly all 100 items on the list and have encouraged millions to believe that anyone can do anything.
“It’s extremely gratifying when I hear others say they have accomplished something outside their comfort zone because of ‘The Buried Life,’” he said. “While marking off something on the list is a huge accomplishment personally, helping others fulfill their dreams is equally fulfilling for us, sometimes even more so.”
Some items on Nemtin’s list have included traveling to White House to play basketball with President Barack Obama, doing a sketch with commedian/actor Will Farrell and sitting on Oprah Winfrey’s couch.
Presently, he is making a movie, another item on the list. "The Buried Life” feature documentary film is set to release this year.
Nemtin has also raised more than $400,000 for charity and escaped a deserted island, which have inspired countless others to chase their dreams.4 comments on this story
His message of radical possibility has been featured in major media, including NBC’s “Today” show, “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” CNN, FOX, ABC, CBS, NBC News and more.
“Ben Nemtin boldly sets his fears aside to pursue his dreams and inspires others to do the same,” Saeed Shihab, vice president of student relations for the Associated Students of the University of Utah, said in a prepared statement.
“His speech will empower the class of 2018 to use their education as a launching pad to achieve great things and become outstanding ambassadors of the University of Utah in their professional endeavors,” Shihab said.