Cory Booker lands another N.J. college graduation speech

BLOOMFIELD -- U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, the former Newark mayor and a popular graduation speaker, will speak at Bloomfield College's commencement ceremony this spring, the college announced Tuesday.  Booker, a Democrat who once spoke at seven local college...

Cory Booker lands another N.J. college graduation speech

BLOOMFIELD -- U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, the former Newark mayor and a popular graduation speaker, will speak at Bloomfield College's commencement ceremony this spring, the college announced Tuesday. 

Booker, a Democrat who once spoke at seven local college graduations in three weeks, delivered the keynote address at William Paterson University's commencement last spring. He will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws from Bloomfield College and be one of multiple honorary degree recipients to speak on May 19, the college said. 

A small private college, Bloomfield serves a large number of African American and Hispanic students, including many from Newark and other urban school districts. 

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"We are delighted and honored that Sen. Booker will be participating in our commencement," Bloomfield President Richard Levao said, adding that Booker has long supported the college's mission. "It will provide a treasured memory to our graduating seniors and their loved ones."    

Booker called Bloomfield College a beacon of academic excellence and civic engagement.

"I thank the students and faculty for this humbling opportunity," Booker said.

Political pundits have identified Booker as potential candidate in the 2020 presidential election, though Booker said last month he's not open to running for president. 

When he spoke at William Paterson last May, during the thick of the presidential race, Booker shied away from speaking directly about politics. But he did tell graduates America should strive to become a country of love, not tolerance. 

There's a big difference, Booker said then, between stomaching someone's right to be different and embracing those who are different. 

"Tolerance is the floor," Booker said. "Love is the ceiling." 

Adam Clark may be reached at adam_clark@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on twitter at @realAdamClark. Find NJ.com on Facebook.

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