Martin Sheen to receive honorary degree from University of Dayton near where he grew up

Associated Press

The University of Dayton will give actor Martin Sheen an honorary degree in recognition of his activism for peace, social justice and human rights.

Born Ramon (RAH'-mohn) Estevez (EHS'-tay-vehz), Sheen grew up near the Catholic university and had attended the Catholic Chaminade (SHAH'-mih-nahd) high school but wanted to pursue his acting career. He has said the Marianist teachings he was exposed to helped shape his social beliefs.

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Sheen's many acclaimed roles have included performances as president in the TV series "The West Wing," a killer on a violent spree in the movie "Badlands" and a soldier on a grim mission in "Apocalypse Now."

The school says the 74-year-old Sheen will receive an honorary doctor of humane letters degree at graduation ceremonies May 3 at the University of Dayton Arena.