BY Nicola Paerg
“This is Us” star Milo Ventimiglia received Harvard University’s 2019 “Man of the Year” award.
Ventimiglia is known for his role as Jack Pearson on the popular drama “This is Us” and for his role as Jess Mariano, Rory’s bad-boy love interest in “Gilmore Girls”.
“I think that Milo Ventimiglia deserves the ‘Man of the Year’ award. His work in ‘This is Us,’ definitely came to mind as an impressive contribution to the entertainment industry. When I see him on television getting interviewed on a talk show or on YouTube, he seems very humble and that is a very admirable quality,” said senior Leah Van Tronk.
“This is Us” is a popular drama on NBC that debuted in 2016 and is currently in its third season.
Ventimiglia’s character Jack Pearson was killed in a tragic house fire in season two episode 14; in which he went back inside the flame engulfed house in a heroic effort and suffered life threatening injuries.
“I am extremely happy that Milo won the ‘Man of the Year’ award,” said senior Rebecca Rutkiewicz. “He was personally my favorite boyfriend of Rory’s in ‘Gilmore Girls.’ In ‘This is Us,’ when he plays Jack, he gets me emotional. He’s just overall one of my favorite actors.”
Ventimiglia was the target of a roast lead by Elizabeth Mann and Mariana Sanchez Medina at the Hasty Pudding Theatricals ceremony on Feb. 8.
“I think he deserves ‘Man of the Year,’ because his character exemplifies the everyday man who’s been through the ultimate struggles in life but has found a way to make those things relatable to the everyday person,” said junior Cassie Simonides. “The character is able to show people how real life actually is despite it being a television show.”
Hasty Pudding has awarded the “Man of the Year,” title since 1967. Other winners include Clint Eastwood, Christopher Walken, Tom Hanks, and Paul Rudd last year in 2018.
“There is no one more deserving for the ‘Man of the Year’ award than Milo Ventimiglia,” said sophomore Tyler McGann. “His role in the show ‘This is Us,’ as Jack Pearson demonstrates what a father figure role is all about. I cry happy tears during every episode.”
Ventimiglia previously starred in Fergie’s music video for her hit single “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” portraying her love interest.
“I am not that familiar with Milo Ventimiglia’s work, but he does seem to be a worthy recipient for the award honored by Harvard,” said senior Sebastian Tonkovich. “He has become fairly well known over the past few years and appears in the news quite frequently.”
People magazine reports that “This is Us,” directors intend to end the show within the next three seasons in a satisfying manner.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed that show since it first premiered and have been hooked on it ever since,” said Van Tronk. “Milo is the foundation of the show and his story as Jack Pearson is what keeps the viewers hooked as well.”