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On April 28 and 29, Jackson State University celebrated its Graduate and Undergraduate Commencement ceremonies respectively. The Lee E. Williams Athletics and Assembly Center hosted the Friday event, while the Saturday ceremony took place at the Veterans Memorial Stadium.

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On May 5th, Alabama A&M University celebrated its annual Commencement Ceremonies. The Class of 2023 was celebrated by students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends at the Event Center on campus. The graduate ceremony took place at 9:00 a.m. and the undergraduate ceremony took place at 5:00 p.m. Additionally, the university marked its 148th anniversary at the Founder’s Day event in Bradford Auditorium – Buchanan Hall. Mac McCutcheon, chairman of the Madison County Commission, was the speaker at the 9:00 a.m. graduate commencement ceremony, while Laura Hall, Alabama State Representative for District 19, provided the address at the 5:00 p.m. undergraduate event. The undergraduate program also included honoring 43 members of the Golden Class of 1973. Overall, more than 700 students graduated and became alumni.

The spring 2023 Commencement ceremony of Florida A&M University took place at the Alfred Lawson Jr. Multipurpose Center in Tallahassee, FL. Dr. Calvin Mackie, the president and CEO of NOLLA STEM, gave a speech to the graduates from the School of Allied Health Sciences, School of Environment, College of Education, and College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences/Institute of Public Health during the first ceremony held on Friday, May 5th at 6 PM.

Over the weekend, Marcia L. Fudge, J.D., Secretary of HUD, addressed multiple groups of graduates. The first ceremony was held in the morning for graduates from the School of Architecture & Engineering Technology; College of Social Sciences, Arts, and Humanities; and Military Commissioning. The second ceremony was held at 2 pm for graduates from the College of Science and Technology; College of Agriculture and Food Sciences; School of Journalism and Graphic Communication; FAMU-FSU College of Engineering; School of Nursing; School of Business and Industry; and College of Law. Harry L. Williams, Ph.D., president and CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF), was the keynote speaker at this ceremony.

On May 6, the William “Dick” Price Stadium hosted Norfolk State University‘s 110th Commencement Ceremony.

Upcoming events

The Spring 2023 Commencement of Southern University is scheduled for Friday, May 12, at the F.G. Clark Activity Center. Marc H. Morial, the president and CEO of the National Urban League, the largest civil rights and urban advocacy organization in the country, will be the keynote speaker. He and his late father, Ernest “Dutch” Morial, were the first Black father and son to be elected as mayors of a major city in the United States, making history.

The 2023 Order of the Engineer Ceremony at Tuskegee University is also set to take place on May 12, in a tent located on the “Chappie” James Center Lawn. The speaker for this event is Ken Garrett, who works as the director of model-based systems engineering at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics. Ken is also the Tuskegee University Technical Liaison for Lockheed Martin. As an aerospace engineering graduate from Tuskegee University, Ken leads mentoring and early career development activities for the students. Additionally, Ken and his wife, Vanetra, who is also a Tuskegee chemical engineering graduate, have been named the 2022-2023 Tuskegee University Parents of the Year. They have two children, Jayla, a graduating senior in chemical engineering from Tuskegee, and Kenny, an incoming freshman in mechanical engineering at Tuskegee. Currently, Ken leads a team of over 500 engineers and specialists who provide support to Lockheed Martin throughout the United States. He assists with various local and corporate endeavors, including digital transformation initiatives, revenue growth strategies, affordability projects, and business development support.

The 2023 Tuskegee University Commencement Address will be delivered by Dr. Lisa D. Cook, who is the first African American woman to serve on the Federal Reserve Board. The speech will take place on May 13th in Daniel “Chappie” James Hall.

Howard University has disclosed that President Biden will be the speaker at their 155th commencement ceremony on May 13th. This makes him the seventh president of the United States to deliver a keynote address at a Howard University commencement convocation. Additionally, the College of Engineering and Architecture (CEA) will be holding an Awards and Recognition Ceremony for their spring 2023 CEA graduates on May 12th. The speaker for this ceremony will be Gregory L. Robinson, a former program director at NASA who received the Alumni Award for Distinguished Postgraduate Achievement at this year’s Charter Day Dinner.

The Undergraduate Ceremony for Engineering, Health and Human Sciences, Science, or Technology at North Carolina A&T University will also take place on Saturday, May 13 at the Greensboro Coliseum. The keynote speaker for the baccalaureate student ceremonies will be NAACP award-winning actor Morris Chestnut, who will speak at 8:30 a.m. for the College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Willie A. Deese College of Business and Economics, and College of Education, and at 3 p.m. for the College of Engineering, John R. and Kathy R. Hairston College of Health and Human Sciences, and the College of Science and Technology.

The speaker for the upcoming 141st Spring Commencement Convocation at Prairie View A&M on May 13 will be Ruth J. Simmons. She served as the President of Prairie View A&M from 2017-2023 and Brown University from 2001-2012. All graduates from various colleges, including the College of Agriculture and Human Sciences, School of Architecture, and Marvin D. and June Samuel Brailsford College of Arts and Sciences, will attend. Students from the College of Business, Whitlowe R. Green College of Education, Roy G. Perry College of Engineering, College of Juvenile Justice, and College of Nursing will be able to walk across the stage, have their names announced, and receive their diploma covers. The ceremony is scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. and is expected to last for three hours.

On May 14, Hampton University will also be holding its Spring Commencement for the May 2023 graduation candidates. The keynote speaker for the 153rd Commencement is Ruth E. Carter, a Hampton alumna who has won two Oscars.

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