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Kevin Connolly to deliver MSU Freshmen Convocation lecture on Sept. 8

August 30, 2010 -- By MSU News Service

Kevin Michael Connolly, an MSU graduate from Helena who has garnered praise for his memoir, "Double Take," as well as his photo exhibition, will speak at the 2010 Montana State University freshmen convocation set for Sept. 8 at MSU. "Double Take" was selected as MSU's summer reading book for freshmen. It is also the selection for one Book-One Bozeman. MSU photo by Kelly Gorham.

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Kevin Michael Connolly, a 2008 graduate of Montana State University who has won international acclaim for his photography and his memoir, "Double Take," will speak at MSU's Freshmen Convocation, set at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 8, at the Brick Breeden Fieldhouse. The event is free and open to the public. Doors open at 6:45 p.m.

Connolly has always had an unusual view of the world. The Helena native was born without legs but grew up "a normal Montana kid" who enjoyed camping, skateboarding and skiing. During his time at MSU, a student exchange program took him to New Zealand, which he used as a jumping-off point to travel the world. During those travels, Connolly, who has degrees in film and photography, snapped more than 30,000 photos of the reactions of people when they first saw him. Those photographs were collected into "The Rolling Exhibition," which has been exhibited at the Smithsonian and the Kennedy Center. He has medaled twice in the ESPN X-Games in mono-ski and is both an accomplished filmmaker and photographer.

When "Double Take: A Memoir" was published last fall, it received starred reviews from Publishers' Weekly and Kirkus Reviews. Connolly has been featured on the BBC, NPR and appeared on the NBC "Today Show." He has also been the subject of articles published in newspapers across the country. Last spring, his book was selected as the required summer reading for MSU's 2,400 incoming freshmen. It will be discussed in classes and venues throughout the MSU campus this fall. It was also chosen as the main selection for One Book-One Bozeman.

A variety of activities have been scheduled in connection with Connolly's lecture. MSU's Exit Gallery will exhibit the winners of an MSU student photography contest from Sept. 7-17. Connolly will sign his book at Sept. 8 from 11:45 - 1:15 p.m. at the MSU Bookstore and immediately following the convocation. He will also be available to sign books following the convocation. To learn more about Connolly's One Book-One Bozeman activities, go to

Connolly's lecture and the MSU Convocation will kick off several days of celebration of the inaugural of Waded Cruzado as MSU's 12th president. To learn more about inauguration activities, go to

A "Double Take" reading guide is available on the Web.

The MSU Convocation is an annual event that celebrates the entrance of freshmen into MSU. It provides incoming students with the opportunity to meet peers and connect with faculty and staff. For more information, go to

The ASMSU, MSU Leadership Institute, the MSU Alumni Association and the Bozeman Public Library Foundation are also sponsors of the event.

Carmen McSpadden (406) 994- 7667 or