Notable Salutatorians and Valedictorians.

Here are some of the Notable Salutatorians and Valedictorians from High Schools and Colleges. This list highlights numerous successful professionals, such as First Lady Michelle Obama, Jimmy Carter, Albert Einstein, Carrie Underwood and Hillary Rodham Clinton. The top graduate with higher grades is referred to as Valedictorian, whereas the honor of becoming a Salutatorian requires the highest overall GPA as well as the mastery on effective public speaking, excellent language skills and strength in extracurricular activities. Princeton University chooses a "Latin Salutatorian" based on the ability to write and deliver a speech to the audience in that language. The title "Salutatorian" comes from the salutatorian's traditional role as the first speaker at the graduation ceremony, delivering the salutatory speech.The Valedictorian usually delivers the "valedictory" address (i.e. bidding farewell and good bye) while the Salutatorian delivers the "salutatory" address (i.e. expressing welcome to the new world) to fellow students, teachers and families in the audience.

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  • Albert Einstein
    Dec. at 76 (1879-1955)
    • Birthplace: Eurasia, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, Ulm
    Salutatorian from High School.
  • Alicia Keys
    • Birthplace: Manhattan, New York, USA
    Valedictorian from Professional Performing Arts School, NY, Class of 1997.
    • Birthplace: Muskogee, Oklahoma, United States of America
    Salutatorian from Checotah High School, OK, Class of 2001.
    • Birthplace: DeKalb, Illinois, United States of America
    Valedictorian from DeKalb High School, IL, Class of 1984.
    • Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, USA
    Salutatorian from Whitney Young High School, IL, Class of 1981.
    • Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, USA
    Valedictorian from Wellesley College, MA, Class of 1969.