CBC Radio’s Metro Morning host Matt Galloway returned to his alma mater, York University, on Monday to receive a second degree — this one, an Honorary Doctorate of Laws.
Professor Ananya Mukherjee-Reed, dean of the school’s Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies, called Galloway a “true champion of diversity, creativity and social justice.”
Galloway, who graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from York in 1994, said he began his career in radio on campus with the university station CHRY 105.5FM. And even though he’s made a career out of public speaking, Galloway said he found himself very nervous Monday morning for his speech to graduates.
“I talk in front of people all the time, and that’s not a strange thing for me, but not on days that mean as much as this. This is your day. You have earned this. You’ve worked so hard. It’s a great honour and a privilege to be here with you this afternoon.”
Galloway said attending York was a family tradition — his mother also graduated from the university. He said while many things have changed since he was a student, some things have remained the same.
“When I came to York, I was promised a subway. Perhaps you were promised a subway,” he said, as the crowd erupted with laughter and cheers.
Galloway said he lived in York’s Vanier College, where the radio station was located. At the time, he said the station had around 50 watts of power.
“You could only hear it south of Sheppard if there was a thunderstorm,” he said. “And yet, in that community and in that power, was something extraordinary about what radio can do, what media can do, and what culture can do. And it shaped a huge part of my life.”