VCU Graduates Walk Out During Governor Glenn Youngkin’s Commencement Address

During Governor Glenn Youngkin’s commencement speech at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), a considerable number of graduating students chose to express their dissent by staging a walkout, effectively conveying a strong message.

In a video capturing the incident, a sizable crowd of graduates can be seen exiting the Greater Richmond Convention Centre just as the Republican governor was about to deliver his address.

While some students celebrated the walkout, Governor Youngkin, who was also awarded an honorary doctorate of humane letters during the ceremony, continued with his speech without acknowledging the students’ departure.

In his address, Governor Youngkin expressed his appreciation for mothers in anticipation of Mother’s Day, however, he did not acknowledge the departing students. Instead, he motivated those who were still present to recognise their capabilities and contribute positively to the world.

The decision to walk out was influenced by a range of factors, such as demonstrating support for Palestinians during the conflict in the Gaza Strip and expressing disagreement with the governor’s education policies, according to local outlet WRIC-TV.

The students who disagreed with the convention center’s policies paraded around its perimeter, voicing their support for knowledge and peace through spirited chants. Later, a group of graduates gathered in a nearby park, continuing their chants and highlighting the importance of coming together.

Attempts to contact VCU and the governor’s office for comment proved unsuccessful. Other universities across the country experienced similar incidents on Saturday, highlighting the increased tensions and unrest on college campuses in recent weeks.

These protests occur in the midst of continued demonstrations by individuals opposed to Israel and confrontations between protesters and authorities at different institutions, such as the University of Pennsylvania and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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