EW Staff
June 18, 1993 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Our most esteemed colleges have been busy with their rite of spring-bestowing , honorary doctorates on celebs such as Billy Joel (right). And if that doesn’t scare you, check out the reason Raymond Burr is now called Dr. Burr. DEBBIE ALLEN College: Howard University, Washington, D.C. Rationale: ”…embodies that elusive element of excellence”

RAYMOND BURR College: University of Colorado at Denver Rationale: ”…brought …Denver into America’s living rooms through …Perry Mason”

NATALIE COLE College: University of Massachusetts at Amherst Rationale: ”(You) touch an inner chord in our hearts”

KATIE COURIC College: Villanova University, Villanova, Pa. Rationale: ”…have become part of the family”

BILLY JOEL College: Berklee College of Music, Boston Rationale: ”…an eloquent musical spokesman of our time”

JERRY LEWIS College: Emerson College, Boston Rationale: ”…(set) America laughing with a zaniness…never…duplicated”

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