Speakers Announced for Commencement, Baccalaureate
Hamilton College has announced plans for an in-person commencement ceremony for members of the Class of 2021 on Saturday, May 22, at 10 a.m., in the Margaret Bundy Scott Field House. Bachelor’s degrees will be awarded to 481 graduates. Due to current New York State restrictions on public gatherings, attendance will be limited to the graduates and those participating in the ceremony.
Military historian and author Ty Seidule, the Chamberlain Fellow and visiting professor of history at Hamilton, will deliver the Commencement address. Sports agent and attorney Mason Ashe, a 1985 Hamilton graduate and charter trustee, will offer the Baccalaureate address on Friday, May 21, at 4 p.m., in the field house.
The Commencement and Baccalaureate ceremonies will be livestreamed.
Ty Seidule is professor emeritus of military history at West Point and the inaugural Chamberlain Fellow at Hamilton. His latest book, Robert E. Lee and Me: A Southerner’s Reckoning with the Myth of the Lost Cause, was published in January by St. Martin’s Press. The New York Times called the book “a powerful and introspective look into white Americans’ continuing romance with the Confederacy, and the lasting damage that has done.”
Seidule has authored numerous books, articles, and videos on military history, including the award-winning book The West Point History of the Civil War (2014). A leader in digital history, he co-edited The West Point History of Warfare, the largest enhanced digital book in any field. His video lecture “Was the Civil War About Slavery?” has 30 million views on social media.
Seidule served in the U.S. Army for more than three decades, retiring in 2020 as brigadier general. A New America Fellow, he graduated from Washington and Lee University and holds a Ph.D. from Ohio State University.
Most recently, he published an op-ed in The Washington Post, been widely interviewed in national media about his book Robert W. Lee and Me, and provided expert commentary about the renaming of U.S. military bases. He was recently named vice chair of the commission to rename military bases that honor confederates.
Mason Ashe earned a law degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo after graduating from Hamilton with a major in psychology. He is founder of Ashe Sports and Entertainment Consulting (ASEC). For 30 years, he has structured and negotiated deals related to athlete and entertainer engagement, compensation, and digital content licensing.
Before launching ASEC in 2013, Ashe served as partner in one of the nation’s largest labor and employment law firms. Previously, he co-founded Strickland & Ashe Management Consulting LLC, one of the largest African American-owned sports and entertainment management firms in the country. In 2003 and 2004, he was included on Sports Illustrated’s list of “101 Most Influential Minorities in Sports.”
From 1993 to 1997, Ashe served as a vice president in the team sports division at International Management Group, the world’s largest sports agency. He negotiated contracts for NFL, NBA, and WNBA players who became starters, league champions, and Pro Bowl and All-Star selections.
Ashe is an adjunct professor of sports law at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Georgetown University Summer Programs in Sports Business Management, and Howard University School of Law. He was named the National Bar Association’s 2016 Sports Attorney of the Year.
At Hamilton, Ashe has served as an alumni trustee, member of the Alumni Council, and a volunteer for the Admission Office and Career Center.