The Charger Blog

Legendary Connecticut Television Journalist to Class of 2024: 'Everyone Has a Story'

During her more than 40 years in television news, Ann Nyberg has developed an appreciation for and an understanding of the power of storytelling. She shared her own story – as well as her words of wisdom and encouragement – with some of the University's newest alumni as part of the University's 2024 Commencement.

May 20, 2024

By Renee Chmiel, Office of Marketing and Communications

Ann Nyberg '24 Hon. delivers the keynote address.
Ann Nyberg '24 Hon. delivers the keynote address.

For Ann Nyberg '24 Hon., stories are powerful. She describes being a lifelong storyteller as her "greatest joy." Stories have been a key theme in her career as a journalist – as well as in her life away from the camera.

The longest-serving female news anchor/reporter in Connecticut television history, Nyberg is also the longest-serving anchor/reporter in WTNH-TV history. She's become a familiar face in homes across the state, anchoring the 5, 6, 10, and 11 p.m. newscasts and producing and hosting her own storytelling-driven show on WTNH called "NYBERG."

As part of the University's 2024 Commencement, Nyberg stepped away from the anchor desk and up to the podium, bringing her passion for storytelling to the Charger community as she delivered the Commencement address.

"I learned early on that everyone has a story," she told the Charger community.

Telling stories
Ann Nyberg ’24 Hon. and Dr. Michael Rossi
Ann Nyberg ’24 Hon. and Dr. Michael Rossi.

Nyberg's interest in stories and storytelling began when she was very young. As she celebrated the new graduates' academic milestones, she reflected on how her own educational journey began when she "found joy" in learning to read and write. She describes it as "opening up her whole world."

Nyberg began recording her own stories in a diary with a lock and key that she received as a Christmas gift when she was 7 years old. She shared one memorable entry – a foreshadowing, of sorts, of her own career path.

"We got our first color TV, and we watched it all day," she read. "That was a banner day. Who knew I'd end up on TV."

Nyberg delivered her address during the University's Saturday morning ceremony, the culminating event of the University's 2024 Commencement, during which nearly 1,300 associate and bachelor's degrees were conferred. Nyberg received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree as part of the ceremony. Indra K. Nooyi, a successful business executive and former chair and CEO of PepsiCo who has been ranked among the world's "100 Most Powerful Women" by Forbes Magazine, received an honorary Doctor of Business Administration degree.

University President Jens Frederiksen, Ph.D., greets Ann Nyberg ’24 Hon.
University President Jens Frederiksen, Ph.D., greets Ann Nyberg ’24 Hon.

Nyberg started her career in television more than 40 years ago after earning a degree from Purdue University. Telling stories has been more than a career – it has been truly transformative. She shared with the new graduates the wisdom she's gained throughout her decades-long journalism career.

"All of our lives have a beginning, a middle, and an end," said Nyberg, who published her first book, Slices of Life: A Storyteller's Diary, in 2015. "Concentrate on the middle."

'You matter'

In addition to storytelling, Nyberg is deeply committed to service. When her third grandchild was born deaf from cytomegalovirus (CMV), the leading cause of non-genetic hearing loss in the U.S., she took action. She pushed for new legislation. Connecticut now requires all healthcare institutions that care for newborns to test them for CMV.

Ann Nyberg ’24 Hon. addresses the Class of 2024.
Ann Nyberg ’24 Hon. addresses the Class of 2024.

"I was passionate," she explained. "Passion fuels you. One day, you will be called upon to help. Find your passion and go after it."

Nyberg urged the Chargers to make their own impact – even if it was by offering something as simple as a smile. She also celebrated how much they've already accomplished, noting their tenacity, courage, and resilience. She offered a special recognition to the many members of the Class of 2024 who are the first in their family to earn a college degree. She left them with a challenge to keep learning, keep persevering, and to "change the world.

"Never give up on something you believe in that you know is for good," she said. "Champion those the world deems invisible. They need you. Always remember that you matter. All of you matter."