When Michael Kutcher ‘02 graduated from Mount Mercy with degrees in management and finance, he didn’t plan on a career path in public speaking. Life has a way of taking unexpected turns. After an eye-opening encounter with five-year-old Bella, a young girl living with pronounced cerebral palsy – a condition Kutcher shares in mild form – Michael decided to let life lead him toward his true calling.
“I went home after that meeting and I looked in the mirror and had a face-to-face discussion with myself,” Kutcher shared in Mount Mercy University Magazine in 2012. “I told myself, ‘You are dealing with the same diagnosis she is … and what are you doing?’ I was ashamed of myself for hiding for so many years … I wanted to change views, to help other people.”
Michael hides no more. He engaged in his first public speaking opportunity at a nonprofit gala in 2009, and today he diligently advocates for people with disabilities. Whether through his national lobbying efforts or via his influential lectures, Michael exemplifies the university’s mission by working for the betterment of all communities.
“Mount Mercy selected Michael as 2014 commencement speaker because of his personal courage and inspirational message,” said Dr. Norm Nielsen, Interim President. “His work parallels our ministry and mission. Michael is a perfect example of the powerful impacts our alumni have on the common good.”
Commencement will be held May 18, 2014, and graduates are sure to walk away carrying a renewed sense of purpose thanks to Michael Kutcher’s motivation. Learn more about Michael’s journey in the Angels of Mercy piece from the Summer 2012 edition.