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For the young graduating class of 2020, life didn’t stop. Stuck at home and graduating via virtual Zoom ceremonies meant that their hard-earned achievements mostly went unnoticed or uncelebrated. There were no lavish parties held in their honor, no diploma passed into their hands in front of an adoring crowd of friends and family, no ceremony at all.
In order to honor the graduating class of 2020, who are part of the most socially conscious generation in the history of the world, President Barack and First Lady Michelle Obama put together a special virtual commencement event called “Dear Class of 2020” to recognize their achievements. Obama directly spoke to them via YouTube, and also invited friends like Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, and Jennifer Lopez to speak.
One of the most powerful addresses was given last night by international entertainment legend Beyoncé. In 10 hours, the speech had nine million views on Instagram. Acknowledging the global turmoil that exists on multiple fronts, Beyoncé congratulated the graduating class of 2020 saying, “You still made it.”
As her commencement continued, she recognized the Black Lives Matter movement, and how young protesters have been at the forefront of it. Her beautiful words were like a healing balm for a world in crisis. She concluded her heartfelt speech by saying, “I pray that you continue to value and celebrate lives that appear different than your own. I know you are ready to start one of the most important journeys of your life. You are at the brink of a huge world shift. Look how far you’ve come, and how much you’ve contributed. Keep pushing, forget the fear, forget the doubt, keep investing, and keep betting on yourself. And congratulations.”