Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has become the first black woman in 42 years to deliver a Commencement Day speech at the University of Pennsylvania.
Introduced by the school’s president Amy Gutmann, Chimamanda became the first black woman to deliver the Ivy League school’s Commencement address since 1978, when then-US Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Patricia Harris did so.
Chimamanda spoke virtually to the class of 2020, who chose her as their Commencement Day speaker, telling them about what strange times we live in.
These may be strange times – they certainly are for me – but I want to urge you to remember that there is so much to celebrate. You’ve done it. You’ve graduated. Congratulations.
The author will be speaking physically to the UPenn class of 2020 on May 22 and 23, 2021, as those dates have been confirmed as the 264th Commencement Day event.
Watch her give her speech below:
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Nigerian author and international speaker @chimamanda_adichie on Monday, became the first black woman to deliver University of Pennsylvania's Commencement address since 1978, when then-US Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Patricia Harris did so 42 years ago. Due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, the university held a virtual celebration on Monday, May 18, 2020 in line with previous schedule. Chimamanda who was introduced by the school’s president Amy Gutmann, congratulated the graduating class. "These may be strange times – they certainly are for me – but I want to urge you to remember that there is so much to celebrate. You've done it. You've graduated. Congratulations," she encouraged. The university confirmed on their website that the 264th Commencement Day event will now take place physically on May 22 & 23, 2021 and Chimamanda who was chosen by the graduating students as Commencement Day Speaker, will also physically address the Class of 2020 again, and fully deliver her commencement speech on that day. #BellaNaija bellanaija.com