Chicago White Sox celebrate Excelsior University Day

The September 17 game brought together the Excelsior community and spotlighted White Sox manager and Excelsior alumnus Pedro Grifol.

CHICAGO – The Chicago White Sox celebrated Excelsior University Day by inviting alumni, faculty, staff and students to cheer on team manager Pedro Grifol, an Excelsior graduate and former professional baseball player leading the franchise for his first season. Excelsior purple punctuated classic Sox colors in the Guaranteed Rate Field stands as University president David Schejbal threw out the ceremonial first pitch. 

Grifol was named the 42nd manager in White Sox history in November 2022. The position is the culmination of a lifelong commitment to America’s pastime. A native of Miami, Grifol was named the 1988 Florida high school baseball player of the year and attended Florida State University to continue his education and playing career. An All-American season with the Seminoles drew the attention of the Minnesota Twins, who called him up in the sixth round of the 1991 Major League Baseball draft. After a nearly 10-year professional career as a player, Grifol enrolled at Excelsior University to complete the academic journey he began at Florida State. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Liberal Studies in February 2001. 

“Excelsior gave me the opportunity to pursue my education while continuing my work in baseball, and I’m truly grateful for all the support I received to get me to where I am today,” said Chicago White Sox manager Pedro Grifol. “Excelsior University Day was a true full-circle moment for me, a chance to thank those that helped me live my dreams while showing others what’s possible.”  

“Both on and off the field, Pedro’s story is an incredible example of what can be achieved through hard work, dedication, and persistence,” said Excelsior University president David Schejbal. “Excelsior’s programs afford the flexibility for busy adults like Pedro to earn a degree on their own time and terms. His success is an inspiration to the entire Excelsior community and an example of how our students can work toward accomplishing their professional and educational goals simultaneously.” 

A portion of proceeds from Excelsior group ticket sales benefited the Excelsior University Scholarship Fund, established to support scholarships for students with financial need. 

Excelsior meets students where they are to work toward degree completion through generous credit transfer and flexible, online education with instructor-led, self-paced courses for the changing needs of adult learners. 


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Media Contact Excelsior University: 

Erin Coufal,, 518-608-8498


Excelsior University is an accredited, not-for-profit online institution focused on helping adults complete their degrees and advance their careers. Excelsior contributes to the development of a diverse, educated, and career-ready society by valuing lifelong learning with an emphasis on serving individuals historically underrepresented in higher education. Founded in 1971, Excelsior meets students where they are — academically and geographically — removing obstacles to the educational goals of adults pursuing continuing education and degree completion. Our pillars include innovation, flexibility, academic excellence, and integrity.