Clemson University President and First Lady Named Honorary Clemson Alumni

Clemson University President and First Lady Named Honorary Clemson Alumni

James P. Clements and Beth S. Clements have been named honorary alumni of Clemson University. Both were recognized with this designation in a special presentation following the Board of Trustees meeting on October 1, 2021.

A graduate of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and Johns Hopkins University’s Whiting School of Engineering, Clements became the 15th president of Clemson University in 2013. He is a nationally recognized leader in higher education who is leading Clemson to unprecedented levels of achievement.

During Clements’ tenure as president, Clemson has set records in applications, retention rates, graduation rates, fundraising, research funding, academic quality, diversity and athletic success. Applications to Clemson have reached a record high of more than 47,000. He has also helped raise more than $1.2 billion dollars in private funds for the university. Approximately $1 billion in new or renovated facilities have been constructed under Clements’ leadership.

Beth is a graduate of Towson University in Baltimore, Maryland where she earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and a Master of Education degree in reading. She is a board member for ClemsonLIFE, a program designed for students with intellectual disabilities.

The Clements have four children, 2 sons-in-law, a daughter-in-law and two grandchildren with another granddaughter on the way.

“Clemson is a special place with special people, and we feel incredibly blessed to be a part of it,” said Jim Clements. “To be officially named honorary alumni and able to wear the Clemson Ring is a huge honor. I am so grateful to the entire Clemson Family for the way they have embraced us and our entire family these past eight years.”

“What an incredible honor! I’ll wear my ring proudly,” said Beth Clements. “Serving Clemson University is a privilege, and I feel blessed to be an honorary alumna.”

Gregg Morton ‘78, board chair of Clemson Alumni Association stated, “Jim and Beth are true Clemson Tigers and richly deserve this honor. They are the perfect fit for our loyal and passionate alumni family.”

The Clemson Alumni Association president-elect, Jeff Duckworth ‘88, and Executive Director, Wil Brasington ‘00, presented the honor to the Clements during a reception attended by their family, members of the Board of Trustees and various faculty and staff.

Honorary alumni are selected by the Alumni Association Honors and Awards Committee on the basis of outstanding service, devotion and loyalty to Clemson University or the Clemson Alumni Association. To see past honorary alumni or to view the award guidelines, visit the honorary alumni web page at