HIGH POINT, N.C., Sept. 10, 2012 – High Point University will continue its tradition of bringing internationally renowned thought leaders to campus by featuring co-founder of Apple Computer, Inc. and Silicon Valley icon Steve Wozniak as its Commencement speaker on May 4, 2013.
Wozniak, who founded Apple Computer, Inc. with Steve Jobs in 1976, helped shaped the computing industry with his design of Apple’s first line of computer products – the Apple I and Apple II. The personal computers he created helped launch the personal computing industry, and for his achievements at Apple Computer, Wozniak was awarded the National Medal of Technology by President Ronald Reagan in 1985, the highest honor bestowed on America’s leading innovators.
Since leaving Apple, Wozniak has been involved in various business and philanthropic ventures that focus primarily on computer capabilities and stressing hands-on learning and encouraging creativity for students. He “adopted” the Los Gatos School District, where he provided students and teachers with state-of-the-art technology equipment.
In 2000, he was inducted into the Inventors Hall of Fame and in 2001 was awarded the prestigious Heinz Award for Technology, The Economy and Employment for “single-handedly designing the first personal computer and for then redirecting his lifelong passion for mathematics and electronics toward lighting the fires of excitement for education in grade school students and their teachers.” The American Humanist Association awarded him the Isaac Asimov Science Award in 2011.
“Steve Wozniak’s innovation in the realm of technology and his efforts to improve classroom learning for children serve as an important reminder to our students to use their talents to give back to others,” says Dr. Nido Qubein, HPU president. “He has lived a life of purposeful innovation.”
Wozniak has also been involved in numerous other projects, including founding the Electronic Frontier Foundation and was founding sponsor of the Tech Museum, Silicon Valley Ballet and Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose. He currently serves as Chief Scientist for Fusion-io and is a published author with the release of his New York Times Best Selling autobiography, “iWoz: From Computer Geek to Cult Icon.”
Wozniak will become part of an extraordinary lineup of HPU Commencement Speakers, including former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan, Dr. Bill Cosby, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, NASA Astronaut Dr. Buzz Aldrin, Muhtar Kent, CEO of the Coca-Cola Company, and former First Lady Laura Bush.