Jamey Johnson Awarded Honorary Doctorate From Jacksonville State University, Gives Commencement Address

Jamey Johnson / Instagram

Country music singer-songwriter Jamey Johnson can now add another title to his repertoire: Doctor.  

Thirty years after being a student, Jamey Johnson was awarded an honorary doctorate from Jacksonville State University (JSU) on Friday, December 15th. He also served as the commencement speaker during the fall graduation ceremony at Pete Mathews Coliseum. 

Jamey Johnson / Instagram

During his address, Johnson said: 

“In my family, we have a rule about relationships: we only choose the ones that choose us back… Jacksonville State University and I chose each other 30 years ago and we still stand together today. I am proud to receive this honorary doctorate and I look forward to working with the faculty and students to raise money for scholarships and support local musicians and songwriters in their quests for success in the field of music.”

Johnson began as a student at JSU in 1993 to study music education. He received a full scholarship to play the French horn and mellophone in the Marching Southerners. He left JSU to join the Marines, where he served for eight years before moving to Nashville to pursue a career in country music. 

Jamey Johnson is launching a new program at JSU          

Johnson is also launching a new annual music series at Jacksonville State University to allow students to learn from successful recording artists and songwriters through performances, workshops, and lectures. 

In a social media post, the university shared

“Last night at the ROC On Benefit Concert, we launched the Jamey Johnson Music Series, which he has agreed to lead each year. Stay tuned for the exciting cultural and educational opportunities the Jamey Johnson Music Series will bring to our students!” 


December 15th was named “Jamey Johnson Day” in Alabama  

To add to the excitement, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey proclaimed that December 15th would officially be known as Jamey Johnson Day in Alabama, the state in which the musician was born and raised. The university congratulated Johnson, saying: 

“We’re thrilled to share that Governor Kay Ivey has issued a resolution, acknowledging the immense contributions of our alumnus, country music legend, and Grand Ole Opry inductee, Jamey Johnson… JSU takes immense pride in celebrating the remarkable journey of Jamey Johnson, from the Friendliest Campus in the South to the grand stages of Nashville. His impact on country music and commitment to supporting education make this day truly special.” 

Congratulations, Jamey Johnson!