Vice President Joe Biden to speak at the U

Event highlights year of exploring ‘purpose’

Poster for MUSE event featuring Joe BidenThe University of Utah MUSE (My U Signature Experience) Project is hosting Vice President Joe Biden as its keynote speaker this year. His appearance highlights the MUSE theme year on purpose, for which Vice President Biden’s book, “Promise Me, Dad,” is the centerpiece text.

Each year, MUSE chooses a theme and centerpiece text as the basis for its educational work. “Purpose” is the 2018-19 theme, and the accompanying book is Vice President Biden’s 2017 memoir, “Promise Me, Dad,” a New York Times No. 1 Bestseller that chronicles the last year of his son Beau’s struggle with a malignant brain tumor that took his life in 2015.

MUSE will host a series of lunchtime lectures, book discussion groups and other activities designed to facilitate reflection and encourage undergraduate students to find purpose in their educational journeys.



Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018, noon; doors open at 11 a.m.

Guests should be seated by 11:45 a.m.

Kingsbury Hall
1395 Presidents Circle, Salt Lake City, UT 84113
Student tickets: Tuesday, December 4th at 10 AM

(in-person at the box office only – free with student ID – limit one ticket per person)

General public: Friday, December 7 at 10 AM

(in-person at the box office and online $10 per ticket – limit two tickets per person)


Cover of "Promise Me, Dad" by Joe Biden

Cover of "Promise Me, Dad" by Joe Biden

Through a grant from the O.C. Tanner Company, MUSE will provide 1,000 copies of the book to U students and other members of the university community.


Sill Center, 195 Central Campus Drive

A brief 15-minute Q&A session will follow. Guests may submit questions prior to the event through the submission form below.


To participate in the Q&A with Joe Biden, please enter your question below by no later than December 7.
Vice President Biden’s visit to the U will center on themes drawn from his recent book, “Promise Me, Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship, and Purpose.” These themes include resilience and finding one’s passion in life. Questions that are selected for this event will be aligned with these topics.

Limit one question per submission.

For questions or issues involving the Q&A please contact the MUSE team at

Biden Q & A Submission


Official portrait of Vice President Joe Biden in his West Wing Office at the White House, Jan. 10, 2013. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)

Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr., represented Delaware for 36 years in the U.S. Senate before becoming the 47th vice president of the United States. He was born Nov. 20, 1942, in Scranton, Pennsylvania, the first of four siblings. In 1953, the Biden family moved from Pennsylvania to Claymont, Delaware. He graduated from the University of Delaware and Syracuse Law School and served on the New Castle County Council.

Then, at age 29, he became one of the youngest people ever elected to the United States Senate. Just weeks after the election, tragedy struck the Biden family when then Senator-elect Biden's wife, Neilia, and their one-year-old daughter, Naomi, died, and his two sons were injured in an auto accident. Vice President Biden was sworn into the U.S. Senate at his sons’ hospital bedside and began commuting to Washington every day by train, a practice he maintained throughout his career in the Senate.

In 1977, Vice President Biden married Jill Jacobs. Jill Biden, who holds a Doctorate in Education, is a life-long educator and currently teaches at a community college in northern Virginia. The vice president’s son, Beau, was Delaware’s attorney general from 2007-2015 and a Major in the 261st Signal Brigade of the Delaware National Guard. He was deployed to Iraq in 2008-2009. Beau passed away in 2015 after battling brain cancer with the same integrity, courage and strength he demonstrated every day of his life. The vice president’s second son, Hunter, is an attorney who manages a private equity firm in Washington, D.C. His daughter Ashley is a social worker and executive director of the Delaware Center for Justice. Vice President Biden has five grandchildren: Naomi, Finnegan, Roberta Mabel ("Maisy"), Natalie and Robert Hunter.

Vice President Biden served as a senator from Delaware for 36 years, Chairman or Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee for 17 years, and Chairman or Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for 12 years before becoming the 47th vice president of the United States. In that role, he continued his leadership on important issues facing the nation and represented America abroad, traveling over 1.2 million miles to more than 50 countries. Vice President Biden convened sessions of the President’s Cabinet, led interagency efforts and worked with Congress on a number of issues. In the final year of the administration, Vice President Biden led the Cancer Moonshot, an international effort to end cancer as we know it.

Since leaving the White House in January 2017, Vice President Biden has continued his legacy of expanding opportunity for all, both in the United States and abroad, with the creation of the Biden Foundation, the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement at the University of Pennsylvania, the Biden Cancer Initiative, and the Biden Institute at the University of Delaware. Through these nonprofit organizations, Vice President Biden and Dr. Biden are developing programs designed to advance smart policies, convene experts and world leaders on the issues they care most about, and impact the national debate about how America can continue to lead in the 21st century. In addition, Vice President Biden formed a political action committee, “American Possibilities,” which will allow him to continue to support Democratic candidates and causes across the country.


For more information about this event please view the full release in @THEU