Puzzlemaster Will Shortz to deliver Law School commencement address

Shortz is New York TImes crossword editor, U.Va. law alumnus


Although Shortz graduated from the University Law School in 1977, he dedicated his career to puzzles rather than law.

New York Times Crossword Editor and well-known puzzlemaster Will Shortz will deliver the commencement address for the University Law School this spring.

Shortz received his undergraduate degree in enigmatology — the study of puzzles, a major which he created himself — from Indiana University at Bloomington in 1974. Also a graduate of the University Law School, Shortz dedicated his life to puzzles rather than pursuing a career in law.

Morgan Lingar, third-year Law student and president of the Student Bar Association, said Shortz was selected because of his unique career path.

“Students graduate and go into a broad array of professions,” Lingar said. “One thing that U.Va. grads have in common is that they often go on to become strong leaders.”

Both his status as an alumnus of the University and strong student interest in previous years made him a compelling choice for commencement speaker.

“We wanted someone who would be engaging during graduation and interesting to listen to,” Lingar said. “He has an interesting form of intellect.”

In 1993, Shortz became the New York Times Crossword Editor and has written countless puzzle books since. In addition, he wrote riddles featured in the 1995 film “Batman Forever” and has guest starred on popular television shows such as “How I Met Your Mother” and “The Simpsons.”

The commencement ceremony will take place May 22.

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