Distinguished Speaker: Kenyon Salo


As a part of the Distinguished Speakers series at Cape Henry, Kenyon Salo was invited to speak on campus this month. Salo spoke to the student body and faculty members and also engaged the group in community-building exercises to help unite the room. The response from the student body of his speech and activities was mixed. While he certainly had an impressive and decorated life full of adventure, his speech may not have catered perfectly to the CHC audience.

Juniors Landon Clay and Madeline Ripa reflected on the experience in a similar way. Neither of the students took away a message from his speech that they felt like they could carry with them and relate to their lives. “He may have had a good message, but it didn’t appeal to our age group and was a bit unrealistic,” shares Madeline. Landon agreed with this, along with Senior, Tucker Bruner. Tucker shared that Kenyon Salo would be taken more seriously in a different environment.

As the speech progressed, it was time for the group activity portion where the students seemed to find it as pointless and unprofessional. Compared to previous distinguished speakers at CHC, Campbell Clay ‘22 felt that Kenyon Salo was less impressive and captivating. Unfortunately, during the group activity, Campbell experienced an accident and left the auditorium that day with a concussion. Of course, the day did not have a great ending for Campbell, but that did not influence his overall opinion of Kenyon Salo. He just personally felt as if his speech did not have a clear point and that “his message did not apply well to Cape Henry (especially the underclassmen), and it would have been better spoken to young adults.”

In the future, the interviewed students would really love to see speakers like professional athletes because a huge portion of the community could really relate and benefit from hearing an athlete speak. As CHC looks to invite more speakers in to address the community, they should consider speakers who will positively influence and inspire the young audience.