College

Over 50,000 petitions protesting Betsy DeVos commencement speech

On Tuesday, May 9th, Students, alumni, and friends of Bethune-Cookman University (BCU) will hand deliver over 50,000 signed petitions to the Bethune-Cookman administration, urging them to remove Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos as the school's commencement speaker. 

The students do not believe that DeVos understands that the importance, contribution, and significance of a historically black college. They believe that it would be an insult to the graduating class, students, alumni, family, friends, and Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune's legacy if she speaks there. They urge the school to rescind their invitation.

Read a section of the petition below:

"Betsy DeVos doesn't understand that HBCUs were created in response to the exclusion of African Americans from mainstream institutions. Secretary DeVos has no understanding of the importance, contributions, and significance of HBCUs…

Having DeVos speak at the commencement ceremony is an insult to the BCU graduating class, students, alumni, family, friends, and Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune's legacy. We, the proud alumni of Bethune-Cookman University, do not want Betsy DeVos to have a seat at our table. Please rescind her invitation to speak at the graduation ceremony…"

Over 50,000 petitions were collected through Change.org, Color of Change, and the Florida Education Association.

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