Chadwick Boseman Praises Howard University Students For Their Activism
Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman gave the commencement speech at Howard University’s graduation last Saturday. During his speech, he praised the students who protested over the financial aid scandal that took place this past school year.
He asked the crowd, “What do you do when the principles and standards that were instilled in you here at Howard close the doors in front of you? Sometimes you need to get knocked down before you can really figure out what your fight is.”
“A Howard University education is not just about what happens in the classroom. Students, in some ways, what you were able to do exemplifies some of the skills you learned in the classroom,” he continued. “It takes the education out of the realm of theory and into utility and practice.”
This year, students held protests over the financial aid scandal in which several employees misused student finances. In April, students took over the administration building for eight days to demand change.
“Everything that you fought for was not for yourself, it was for those who came after you,” Boseman said to the students who protested.
He also commended them for succeeding in reaching their demands, “You received a majority of your demands, making a significant impact on those who came after you.”
“Purpose is the essential element of you,” Boseman told the graduates. “It is the reason you are on the planet at this particular time in history. Your very existence is wrapped up in the things you are here to fulfill.”
As he began to wrap up his speech, he reminded the graduates, “Savor the taste of your triumphs today. Don’t just swallow the moment whole without digesting what is actually happening here. Look down over what you conquered and appreciate what God has brought you through.”
He concluded his speech with the infamous “Wakanda salute” and said, “Howard forever.”