In his first public appearance outside of Washington, D.C., after the March 30, 1981, assassination attempt at the hands of John Hinckley, President Ronald Reagan spoke at the University Commencement Ceremony. To some of the loudest applause he would receive that day, Reagan began his speech claiming he most certainly would “not talk about the great issues of the day." Instead, he wanted to offer those graduating something more “inspirational” and “appropriate to the occasion.”

New York Times coverage of speech