The 2019 College of Saint Elizabeth commencement speaker was David Clowney, ’11, a retired wide receiver in the National Football League (NFL). While in the NFL, Clowney would leave practice with the New York Jets in Florham Park and drive down the road to the College of Saint Elizabeth. His profound respect for education enabled him to pursue a master’s in justice administration at CSE while balancing fatherhood with the rigorous demands of being a professional athlete.
“When my son was first born, he never slept. So, I’d stay up late each night to get all my work done,” recalled Clowney, who is currently the inside receivers coach and pass game coordinator at Howard University. “I would literally watch game film, pause it, read a chapter of homework while rocking my son’s crib and then go back to the film.”
In his commencement address, Clowney spoke about his personal journey with education and encouraged students to never stop learning.
“Education is powerful, it is the first step to cross cultural understanding, it builds confidence, combats poverty, helps with decision making skills and creates opportunities,” said Clowney. “By attending the College of Saint Elizabeth, understand that you didn’t make a four-year decision. You made a 40- and 50-year decision.”